Each day, millions of students fuel their minds and bodies with the good nutrition provided by the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program. There is considerable evidence of the effective role that participation in these programs plays in alleviating food insecurity and poverty, and in providing the nutrients students need for growth, development, learning, and overall health, especially for the nation’s most vulnerable children and adolescents.
Research shows that the school breakfast and lunch programs are effective in alleviating food insecurity and poverty, supporting good nutrition, and improving health and learning. In addition, recent policy changes (e.g., community eligibility, updated nutrition standards) and innovative models of program delivery (e.g., breakfast in the classroom) are connecting more students to these critical programs and producing more positive and healthier outcomes. Continuing to increase access to, and strengthen, the school meals programs will further their role in supporting and improving student health and well-being.