As School Ends, Hunger Begins
Most children jump for joy when the final bell rings on the last day of school. For them, summer means freedom. It means camp, vacation, and popsicles.
But summer also means hunger and stagnation for too many American children. When school lets out, many children face a summer of skipping meals or consuming the cheap but empty calories that contribute to the nation’s child obesity epidemic. Many will languish inside for lack of safe or stimulating places to play while mom and dad are at work. And they will fall further behind higher-income peers who are engaged in summer learning opportunities.
More than 31 million children benefit from the national school lunch program, 62 percent of whom receive free or reduced-price meals. But only one in six of these kids will receive a similarly subsidized summer meal during the summer months.
The federal government’s two main programs for feeding low-income…
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