Summer feeding program to start soon

Published 7:00 am Thursday, May 12, 2016

This summer, all three school districts in Pearl River County will be hosting a summer feeding program.
Picayune School District Food Service Director Debbie Byrd said the program is funded by USDA Food and Nutrition Services. Many districts throughout the state offer the program.
Byrd said the USDA authorized the program in 1968 to ensure children, who wouldn’t otherwise get a well-balanced meal, received a nutritious, hot meal during the summer months.
This the Picayune School District’s 14th year to host the program, she added.
Picayune’s program will begin on June 6 and last through July 15. There will be no meals served on July 4, in observance of the holiday. Meals will be served at Nicholson and Southside Elementary from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
“We follow the same nutritional guidelines as we do during the school year,” she said. “We offer them five components, meat, meat alternate, grain, fruit/vegetable and milk. They only have to take three.”
Children who live in the Nicholson area will have the option to ride a bus to eat lunch at Nicholson Elementary, Byrd said. Parents are encouraged to contact the transportation office at 601-798-7760 to arrange transportation. A letter from central office is also being sent home to parents, she added.
The Pearl River County School District’s food program will be held from June 7 to June 30 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, PRC School District food service administrator Sheila Amacker said.
The program will be held at Pearl River Central Elementary cafeteria located at 1592 Henleyfield-McNeill Rd., in McNeill.
According to a flyer from the Poplarville School District, their summer feeding program will be held at Poplarville Lower Elementary from May 31 through June 24. Lunch will be held from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
The summer feeding program is open to all children 18 years and younger at no cost.
In Picayune and Pearl River Central, the cost of an adult meal will be $3.25.
“It’s hard on some families to feed their children during the summer,” Byrd said. “Good nutrition throughout the summer is an essential part of a child’s growth.”

LUNCH TIME: A student at Southside Upper Elementary receives her lunch.  Photo by Cassandra Favre

LUNCH TIME: A student at Southside Upper Elementary receives her lunch.
Photo by Cassandra Favre

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