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Thread: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

  1. #1
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    Question Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    For a couple years, I had free lunch (and this was when lunch was about 35 cents per day--mid to late '80s) at a Catholic school. At first I was embarassed, even though no money was exchanged in the cafeteria (parents paid the school office monthly), but I later learned that most of the school had free/reduced because most kids came from single parent families.
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Man I just paid for two of my kids lunches for the month of March. DOE public schools cost $25 per month per child and that's if they don't eat breakfast. I think I'll start packing lunches for my kids every now and then to stretch that budget.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by craigwatanabe View Post
    Man I just paid for two of my kids lunches for the month of March. DOE public schools cost $25 per month per child and that's if they don't eat breakfast. I think I'll start packing lunches for my kids every now and then to stretch that budget.
    You think your kids paying $1.25 for lunch every day is being excessive?

    Do you think that you can provide your children with a comparable quality lunch (main course, salad, fruit, dessert/snack, half-pint milk carton) for significantly less than $1.25? Even if you bought all your groceries at Costco prices, that would be a challenge.

    I think if I carefully shopped, I might be able to beat the $1.25 price by a few cents. But for me, the savings wouldn't be worth the effort.
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    I had reduced lunch in middle school I think, and then in High School I got free lunch. I was never embarassed by it, although I was annoyed to go free, because before, instead of actually buying lunch I'd just save my lunch money and end up mooching off of my friends.

    I think in high school the regular lunch price was $2.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by craigwatanabe View Post
    Man I just paid for two of my kids lunches for the month of March. DOE public schools cost $25 per month per child and that's if they don't eat breakfast. I think I'll start packing lunches for my kids every now and then to stretch that budget.
    Our kid gets to share the savings if she brings a healthy home lunch...
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    I remember the days when school lunch was $0.20 (including either white or chocolate milk in bottles) before it got raised to a quarter. There was no free or reduced lunches except for kids whose parents worked for the plantation and were on strike. Those kids would get a wooden token to pay for the lunch during the duration of the strike. As I recall, there was no stigma attached to the situation.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    My K-8 didn't have a cafeteria so every kid brought home lunch.

    I went to a private high school (circa 10-15 years ago), and the lunch plates were always $2.50. A catering company ran our cafeteria, so we always had good food. Some employees worked as chefs in training at big hotels, so once in a while we'd get treated to yummy gourmet stuff. Nothing was ever more than $4.00, if I'm remembering correctly.

    My school served breakfast as well. Nothing beats a huge loco moco plate for only $1.25!
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    You think your kids paying $1.25 for lunch every day is being excessive?

    Do you think that you can provide your children with a comparable quality lunch (main course, salad, fruit, dessert/snack, half-pint milk carton) for significantly less than $1.25? Even if you bought all your groceries at Costco prices, that would be a challenge.

    I think if I carefully shopped, I might be able to beat the $1.25 price by a few cents. But for me, the savings wouldn't be worth the effort.
    It cost the State about $4 to make a lunch so it loses $2.75
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    The first 3 or 4 years in elementary school, I had free lunch. After that my parents made enough money so that I didn't need that anymore, I guess. I never ate breakfast in elementary and middle school. For whatever reason, the food tasted disgusting. I seriously hated lunch in elementary, but in middle and high school I loovvved lunch. And in high school I also loved breakfast. I do remember that I was paying $1 in high school for lunch, I don't remember the cost for the others or breakfast.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Was I the only kid who went home for lunch? School was only a couple of blocks away. We all went home. There was no cafeteria - not even a vending machine. I think there was a cafeteria in high school, but I don't remember anyone ever going there. I only remember taking the SAT's in there. My son came home for lunch too. We had to scramble to make sure someone was home at that time every day. And when he was in high school, he took lunch every day.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by acousticlady View Post
    Was I the only kid who went home for lunch? School was only a couple of blocks away. We all went home. There was no cafeteria - not even a vending machine. I think there was a cafeteria in high school, but I don't remember anyone ever going there. I only remember taking the SAT's in there. My son came home for lunch too. We had to scramble to make sure someone was home at that time every day. And when he was in high school, he took lunch every day.
    The schools I attended prohibited us from leaving campus without proper permission.

    I lived a couple of blocks from my K-8, but the time it took for me to walk home, eat lunch, and walk back was longer than lunchtime itself.

    In high school, McDonalds was across the street, but it was forbidden to have an off campus lunch.
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    I had reduced lunch in elementary and for intermediate school days. But I remember that I paid for my own lunch during high school. The lunch in high school during my days was only $0.75.
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  13. #13

    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    I am so glad I saw this thread as it reminded me that I need to pay for my kids' school lunches (and breakfasts) soon - I think their funds in their accounts are getting low! They eat both breakfast and lunch in school every day unless they're going on a field trip, then we have to pack a home lunch...

    i never had free or reduced when i went to school, but my hubby did (not sure which - free or reduced)
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by kanahina View Post
    I am so glad I saw this thread as it reminded me that I need to pay for my kids' school lunches (and breakfasts) soon - I think their funds in their accounts are getting low!
    Mahalo for the reminder! I have to go into my boy's school and pay tomorrow as well.

    It costs me $80.00/month for 2 boys to eat breakfast and lunch at school. It can cost a bit more than that if they have extra milk or ice cream. I used to only pay for lunch and feed them breakfast at home until I found out they were eating breakfast at school anyway. They like sitting with their friends at school during breakfast and eating before class so I said okay to it. They just don't get breakfast at home before school now. They don't need to eat two meals in a half hour.

    I honestly can't remember if I had free, reduced, or full price lunch in elementary. I know in middle school and high school I sure the heck had to pay full price.
    I'm disgusted and repulsed, and I can't look away.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by alohabear View Post
    It cost the State about $4 to make a lunch so it loses $2.75
    If the DOE charges $4 for teachers/staff now, then I believe you are absolutely correct.

    So I really don't know about some of the posts here that imply that public school lunches are too expensive. As Alohabear says, the lunches are subsidized for students, making it an almost unbeatable deal. The only way that parents can beat the $1.25 price is by skimping on the quality of the lunches, or worse yet, having them skip lunch entirely. IMO, not a good way for a family to try to save money.
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    I never had breakfast in school before. What does that involve? Is it part of the school day or just for the kids who arrive early before class starts?

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    I had free lunch too at my elementary school when it was 25 cents. By the time it went up, I had reduce lunch and it cost me 15 cents to get the tolken. My teacher did say "no shame" on the "free" lunches. If your family needed it. It's there. We needed it back then, but I did feel a bit unconfortable, as I got older. By HS, sometimes I would just pay full price (like my friends) because I didn't want to get my tolken.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    If the DOE charges $4 for teachers/staff now, then I believe you are absolutely correct.

    So I really don't know about some of the posts here that imply that public school lunches are too expensive. As Alohabear says, the lunches are subsidized for students, making it an almost unbeatable deal. The only way that parents can beat the $1.25 price is by skimping on the quality of the lunches, or worse yet, having them skip lunch entirely. IMO, not a good way for a family to try to save money.
    I manage the cafe here in Hilo and was told at one one of our meetings that the BOE only wants to raise the price of the "paid" kids. In my 25years in the cafeteria, full price lunches have went from $.75 to $ 1.25, but the reduce rate has never been pass $.20. SFS branch that runs the lunch program tells us that they have the option to raise the reduce price to $.50, but are always rejected by the (elected) BOE.

    IMO, the people "who can afford" always get screwed. Raising the reduce price will only bring more money that School Food Services can use .
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    On a side note: I used to love cafeteria food. The cafeteria ladies used to make everything like a home cooked meal. It was something they did for 20+ years. They were like your mom. There was pride in what they did.

    By the time I got to intermediate school, the quality started to go down. The cafeteria ladies just slap the food together because it was their job for this month.

    Bt the time I was in high school, I could not eat some of the stuff they served. The cafeteria workers look like they came from OCCC. The best thing was the 2% Viva milk, because it was packaged and made by someone else.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by sophielynette View Post
    I never had breakfast in school before. What does that involve? Is it part of the school day or just for the kids who arrive early before class starts?
    Wasn't part of the day or any schedule at my schools. Just anyone who wanted could get breakfast at 7:30 'til 5 minutes before the bell unless they ran out but they usually didn't.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by sophielynette View Post
    I never had breakfast in school before. What does that involve? Is it part of the school day or just for the kids who arrive early before class starts?

    My HS cafeteria opened at around 5:30-6:00 in the morning. They had a great breakfast menu: 2 eggs (however you like em) and breakfast meats and rice; loco moco; short stacks; grilled cheese sandwiches; etc. etc. and most items were less than $3.00. Breakfast was served until the first bell rang when everyone had to report to homeroom.
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  22. #22

    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Yeah, at the public elementary school that my kids attend, they serve breakfast from 7:00 am until about 7:30. Because of our work schedules, we pay for "morning care" and drop them off at school at around 6:45 - 7 am anyways so they eat breakfast there.
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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Back in my hanabutta days, I had free lunch in elementary but reduced pay lunch in intermediate-high. Ironic since I opted for buying $1 snack during morning recess and skipped lunch period.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by alohabear View Post
    IMO, the people "who can afford" always get screwed. Raising the reduce price will only bring more money that School Food Services can use .
    Wow, the price on reduced lunch is still frozen at 20 cents? Yeah, I would agree that a slight increase is called for.

    Maybe the BOE reasons that if they increased the price on reduced lunch, those parents affected will respond by opting to have their kids skip lunch entirely.

    I would say that those parents who insist they cannot pay more than 20 cents for reduced lunch should agree to having their children serve as cafe monitors or given some kind of duty that would not involve them from missing class. Maybe that would instill within those children the idea of working to get something, rather than expecting a handout.
    This post may contain an opinion that may conflict with your opinion. Do not take it personal. Polite discussion of difference of opinion is welcome.

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    Default Re: Who had reduced or free lunch in school?

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankie's Market View Post
    I would say that those parents who insist they cannot pay more than 20 cents for reduced lunch should agree to having their children serve as cafe monitors or given some kind of duty that would not involve them from missing class.
    Who in public school didn't worked in a cafeteria at one time or another, as a student helper?

    Mine is like the classic Andy Bumatai's High School Daze.

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