Welcome to Food Services
Mark Hicks, Director of Food Service.
Here at the Arlington Food Service Department, we are guided in our mission to exceed our customers' expectations by utilizing a process of continuous improvement. We are dedicated to providing the best available nutritional components and incorporating them into a wide variety of menu choices that offer great value to our students and staff. Our team is committed to preparing healthy yet interesting meals that surpass the dietary guidelines as defined by the new Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act, administered by the USDA.
School Lunch During COVID-19 and Returning to the Classroom.
As of Monday March 22nd Students will begin to return to the Elementary Schools in greater numbers then previously. We are excited to see and serve the kids again! Children will find that social distancing and other guidelines and requirements make it necessary to offer a less diverse menu than before. This is necessary to effectively serve students in the time of COVID-19. All schools will ramp up the choices and options as we move further along.
Remote Learning Students effective March 22nd.
A remote learning student or parent from any school within Arlington can pick up their lunch and breakfast kit at the following schools: LaGrange Middle School, Arlington High School, and the Union Vale Middle School from the school main entrance between 10:30 am and 1:00 pm. These meal kits are free for any student who is eligible for Free or Reduced Meals. For all other students, the cost to purchase the meal kit,which includes lunch and breakfast, is as follows: Elementary $4.70, Middle School $4.85, High School is $5.00.
In order to receive these meals, either a student or their parent/guardian must provide the student’s name, student ID number, and the school they attend for each meal kit. A student name and ID number are required. Please note that we can only provide one kit per student ID. Student accounts will be charged accordingly. There is no charge for students who are eligible for Free and Reduced Meals. Click Here for applications for Free and Reduced Meals for the 2020/2021 school year. Paper copies are available at each school.
All breakfast and lunches will meet the USDA standards for school lunch and will include a fruit, a vegetable and a milk or juice. Click here for an example of a typical meal kit.
Why are meals no longer free for everybody?
Arlington had participated in a program under a mandate from Governor Cuomo during the Spring. From March 16th through June 30th Arlington made meal kits available 5 days a week to any Arlington Student. This program was run without any aid from the State and with very small reimbursement amounts from the USDA. This caused the Arlington Food Service Department to operate the Free Meals program on its cash reserves without any significant revenue received and depleting its operating budget. The District was then forced to step in and replenish our operating budget with a transfer of funds from the general operating fund. The final loss of revenue and the depletion of reserve funds was catastrophic. Since all schools food services operate outside the school district general budget, a decision was made in September to return to the regular lunch program. Children whom are designated as qualified for free meals under these guidelines will continue to receive their meals at no cost. Children whom would normally pay for meals will return to doing so. Many factors went into this decision including existing operating budget deficits, a lack of funding from the State, avoiding furloughs of staff and helping students return to some normalcy. While we anticipate financial losses again this year we are dedicating to managing the outcome as best can be done with taxpayers in mind while still meeting the realistic needs of the children. The Governor has not mandated this program yet although many of the smaller districts with much less financial risk have opted to continue the program. No child in Arlington will go without school lunch if they have need. Things can change and if we are mandated to return to the free meals for all program we will do so.
Please check back here for updates and changes as we move forward!
The Dutchess County Summer Food Service Program
A great way to ensure that kids get the healthy food they enjoy during the school year, even when schools are not in session. All kids are invited to drop by locations in Poughkeepsie, Beacon, Amenia/Millerton and Wappingers for a meal, activities, or both!
The summer meals opportunities in Dutchess County are collaborative efforts with various locations and hours.
Parents are encouraged to call 845-677-8223 extension 110 to find out more about all the Summer Food Service Programs being offered in your area.