SAN FRANCISCO—Despite school campus closures and remote learning, the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) will continue serving reduced-price and free meals for the 2020-2021 school year. Beginning August 19, grab-and-go meals can be picked up at 18 school sites weekly, on Wednesdays from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The meal packages, available weekly, include breakfast, lunch, dinner, fruits, vegetables, and milk. SFUSD students must have a SchoolCafe.com account. Families must submit one new application every school year. Information takes five days to process.
The address of the 18 school sites, as well as additional instructions on how to apply for benefits are listed on the SDUSD website under the Health and Wellness row (https://www.sfusd.edu/services/health-wellness/nutrition-school-meals). The site provides maps showing the locations of the school sites, located throughout the city from Japan Town to Bayview, and from the Sunset to Balboa.
Students whose households are on government benefits, including CalFresh (a California food stamp program), CalWORKS (a government cash aid program for families), or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (a food distribution program on Native Tribal Organizations as an alternative to the Food Stamp program), are eligible for free meals. Students who meet the SFUSD definitions of homeless, migrant, or runaway also are eligible. Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) benefit program participants may be eligible.
Raymond M., father of two sons who go to School of the Arts (SOTA) and James Denman Middle School, both SFUSD schools, said that one student can get one meal for every SFUSD student. “I got four bags and that is for two students,” said Raymond M.
He recently got laid off from a company that does catering for private schools. “The pandemic has impacted us quite a bit.”
The SFUSD news update on the school nutrition plan provided charts showing free eligibility and reduced-price eligibility for breakfast, lunch, and milk, based on household income and household size. A household of four earning between $34,060 to $39,884 is eligible for free meals during the 2020-2021 school year. A household of such size would need to earn between $48,470 and $56,758 to qualify for reduced-price meals.
The SFUSD Student Nutritional Services free and reduced-price meal program serves students regardless of citizenship status. Eligible families were encouraged to apply. A social security number is not required on the application.
Abraham Lincoln High School security guard, named Eric, who has been working at the school for over 30 years said: “With this COVID Pandemic, people have to eat. Kids have to eat. I think it is great–what this program has done for these kids.”
San Francisco Unified School District Student Nutrition Services can be reached for direct assistance at (415) 749-3604 or via email at SchoolLunch@sfusd.edu.