More American students are benefitting from school breakfast than ever before, according a new report by the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC). Recently FRAC released its Breakfast Scorecard for school year 2013 – 2014, reporting on School Breakfast Program participation in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
According to the report, an average of 13.2 million children nationally ate school breakfast each day in school year 2013-2014, an increase of 320,000 from the previous year. Approximately 85 percent of the students who eat breakfast at school qualify for free or reduced price meals. The School Breakfast Program is a crucial strategy to help feed the students who need it most.
Results for New Hampshire show that the state has increased the use of school breakfast over the past year but not enough to move upward in the rankings. For every 100 students receiving free or reduced price lunch in New Hampshire, only 39.7 also receive breakfast, still placing New Hampshire 50th in the report’s state rankings. FRAC estimates that increasing free and reduced price participation in school breakfast to 70% would bring over $3,000,000 in additional federal funding to New Hampshire each year.
“School breakfast is a crucial element in the nation’s efforts to reduce hunger and boost health and learning,” the report concludes. “Even with recent strides in school breakfast participation in many states, there is still much room for further improvement.” For more information on how New Hampshire schools are working to make such improvements, please visit www.nhschoolbreakfast.org.