As part of the Fiscal Year 2023 state budget, signed by Governor Charlie Baker on July 28, 2022, all K-12 public-school students in Massachusetts will be eligible for free school lunches this coming school year. The budget allocates a one-time investment of $110 million to support a pilot program providing school meals for all.
Over the last two school years, all public-school students in Massachusetts were provided free school meals through federal waivers granted as part of the COVID-19 relief efforts. In March 2022, Congress rejected calls to extend the federal funding for another year, leaving states to either fund their own version of the program or let it expire. The recently approved state budget makes Massachusetts the fifth state to fully fund free school meals for another school year. This allocation is only for the 2022-2023 school year, and there is no guarantee the program will continue beyond this year.
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This update is provided for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice.