Meal programs at 2 Heartland schools to accommodate all students

School lunch time changes

JACKSON/SCOTT CITY, Mo. (KFVS) - This school year will look very different from previous years to keep students across the Heartland safe, whether classes are held in person or online.

Now, meal programs in two Heartland schools will accommodate all students, even those who are not in the classroom.

”We intend to be a little bit more proactive this year and see if we can search out more families that need help so we can get them the help they need,” said John Link, Jackson superintendent.

Link said as economic difficulties of the pandemic continue, more Jackson R-2 families will likely join the power pack program for low-income families.

“I have a feeling that we’ll have a bigger need this year for that,” Link said.

So, the school has set up designated meal pick up spots for students learning from home to still get their meals.

All Jackson students have been eating for free since March, but that waiver will run out September 1.

“We’re hopeful they’ll extend that past September 1, but at this point in time, we’re not aware if they’re going to or not,” Dr. Link said.

Scott City schools also continued to feed students during the pandemic. Superintendent Michael Umfleet said the school will have meals available for pick-up for all students this school year.

“Just planning to continue to feed those kids even if they’re not at school. Having times that they come and pick up the meals and even if we have to deliver some of those we will do that too,” Umfleet said.

For the students attending in-person classes, schools plan to make changes to their cafeterias.

“We gotta spread kids out a little bit more,” Link said. “Utensils are going to have to be throw away utensils. Everything will be more plate oriented and we’re looking at individual wrappings on the plates.”

At Scott City, students will use the gym as an extra eating space.

“The kids probably will like that a little bit. They love being in the gym so I think that will help us out,” Umfleet said.

Administrators said the adjustments are not ideal, but necessary as the pandemic wears on.

“Unfortunately, this is not what education should look like but it’s where we’re at and we’re going to do the best we can,” Umfleet said.

You can find the latest updates for these schools on their websites.

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