Free breakfast and lunch for all students in some Waterloo schoo - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Free breakfast and lunch for all students in some Waterloo schools

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10 out of 19 schools in the Waterloo Community School District will be giving free breakfast and lunch to all of their students in the fall.

These schools have qualified for a federal program called The U.S Department of Agriculture's Community Eligibility Provision or CEP. Many school officials and parents are excited saying it gives every child the opportunity to feel included or accepted, regardless of their background.

A cold drink and a full meal, children are enjoying a free lunch as part of Waterloo's Summer Lunch Program. For parents, any little bit helps and now there's a similar program in some schools, also federally funded.

Food Service Director Heather Bathen says, "There's no applications, no notes home saying they are low on money, no phone calls...everyone is equal. It's all free."

One of the schools that qualified is Kittrell Elementary, which is good news for teachers and parents. Stephanie Gates is both here.

"A lot of times we are honestly not sure if they are going to have food for the weekend. For families to know that they will have breakfast and lunch taken care of, maybe that will help with a grocery bill or gas into vehicles," she says. 

A chance for all students to feel equal, no matter their background.

"It's amazing that so many schools, so many families are going to benefit from this," Gates says. 

If your child's school is not on the list  and you still need some help, families can individually apply for free or reduced lunches through your school. Also, every year Waterloo school officials will re-examine data to consider adding other schools to this program.

Waterloo is not the only city in this program, schools in Des Moines, Sioux City and Cedar Rapids are also involved. 

The 10 Waterloo Schools enrolled in this program for the 2017-2018 school year include:

Elk Run Early Childhood Center

Dr. Walter Cunningham School for Excellence 

Highland Elementary School

Irving Elementary School

Lincoln Elementary School

Lowell Elementary School

Kittrell Elementary School

Central Middle School

GW Carver Middle School

Expo Alternative High School

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