Focus Area:EducationSchool Food Initiative

Frequently Asked Questions


How do I get more information about what my child is eating at school?

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), which administers the National School Lunch Program, encourages all parents to have lunch with their children at school at least once a year. Actually seeing the food offered in your school cafeteria, and what foods they are choosing, is the best way to become accurately informed about what your child eats at school.


How do my children qualify for a free or reduced lunch?

For your children to qualify for a free lunch, your household income must fall below 130% of the federal poverty level. For reduced-price meals (which cost 40 cents), your household income must be between 130% and 185% of the federal poverty level. Homeless, runaway, and migrant children are also eligible for free lunch. Depending on the demographics of your school district, you may have to fill out a form to establish your child's eligibility for free or reduced lunch.


Is the School Food Initiative limited to Santa Barbara County?

Yes. At present, the School Food Initiative focuses its efforts in the public school districts in Santa Barbara County. However, we hope to gather information and develop strategies that will be useful to other school districts across the country.



What can parents, grandparents, and caregivers do?

There are many things that parents, grandparents, and caregivers can do on their own to help create and support a healthier school food environment. To find out how to get involved click here.