- Associated Press - Saturday, June 13, 2015

LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) - Students at 19 Lafayette Parish schools could receive free meals in the upcoming school year, if the school district qualifies for a new USDA program for high-poverty areas.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s community eligibility provision provides free breakfast and lunch to schools in low-income areas in lieu of having parents fill out annual applications for free or reduced-price meals.

Eligibility for the program is based on the percentage of students whose families qualify for federal programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, more commonly known as food stamps. Students who are homeless, migrant or in foster care also count toward the eligibility requirements.

The Advocate reports (https://bit.ly/1C4GTFX ) the program is designed to reduce the annual paperwork for both families and school districts.

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Information from: The Advocate, https://theadvocate.com

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