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School Breakfast Grows More Popular in Montgomery County

Advocates for free school breakfast programs say student achievement is linked to the availability of breakfast in schools.

More schools in Montgomery County are participating in free breakfast programs, a reality that may result in increased student achievement, advocates for school breakfast said. 

"Expanding participation in breakfast is one of the best ways to ensure that Maryland’s children are healthy and ready to learn," said Cathy Demeroto, director of Maryland Hunger Solutions. "Efforts to expand school breakfast in Maryland are making a difference, and we’re pleased to see that the state is moving in the right direction. Still, we can build on this progress and reach even more children, especially in urban areas."

During the 2011-2012 school year, 49.3 percent of low-income children attending Montgomery County Public Schools participated in the breakfast program. That's an increase of 16.6 percent over the previous year, according to Maryland Hunger Solutions data.

The organization's goal is to get all jurisdictions in the state to at least 70 percent participation among students who are eligible for free and reduced meals, the main measure of poverty in Maryland public schools.

If Montgomery were to achieve that metric, more than 7,000 additional students would be part of the breakfast program, making the school system eligible for nearly $2 million in additional federal aid reimbursement.

Councilwoman Valerie Ervin (D-Dist 5), along with leaders from Prince George's County, lobbied last December for more state aid to fund school nutrition programs. 

"Providing nutritious meals is one of the most immediate and cost-effective ways to improve a child's health and performance in the classroom," said Ervin.

jag May 17, 2013 at 05:05 PM
I know, right. Much better to let them go hungry. It's not like that'll negatively impact their education or anything. And it's not like education is important. Besides, it's their fault for being poor, duh. They're obviously really lazy, am I right?
jag May 17, 2013 at 06:16 PM
Correct, it's called a society. We also communally have decided to provide children with teachers to educate them and police and military to protect them. We also provide buses to drive them and sidewalks for them to walk along. Oh, wait, wealthy kids get those benefits, too, so they're okay to keep. It's only poor kids we should focus on f*&$ing, I forgot.
jag May 17, 2013 at 07:58 PM
You say that as if your V8 driving self doesn't drive on massively subsidized roads and your mortgage payment isn't massively subsidized with tax deductions. You suck on the public teet a whole lot more than some poor kid getting a reduced price breakfast.
jag May 19, 2013 at 04:39 AM
...of course children don't pay taxes...yet. That's the entire point, we give them what they need to succeed (which, believe it or not, includes a freakin breakfast 180 days a year). The point is children receive benefits (and don't pay their fair share - yet - which is obvious and understandable) while you receive benefits without paying your fair share, e.g. you only pay a fraction of the cost of the road usage you like to brag about, which is obviously unacceptable. You hold impoverished 1st graders to a higher standard than yourself which makes zero sense. I'd be okay if you were an actual conservative and called for and equal removal of all subsidies, but that's nowhere near the case. You say the handouts you receive are okay because "According to the law I pay my fair share", but according to the law impoverished people pay their fair share, too. You think you're entitled to all the subsidized crap handed to you, yet poor kids getting 60 cents off their school meal bothers you. Absolutely insane. "I'm leaving and soon. I hope you remain and find happiness." Good. At least we agree on something and I'm happy for you. Hopefully you'll be able to find somewhere that hates on kids and poor people. Somewhere not liberal, but also not religious/social conservative (pesky "feed the poor" morals). Or actual conservative - they'll take issue with the selectivity of your anti-handout outlook. Good luck finding your bliss.

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