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West Virginia Schools Systems Participating in Option to Further Universal Free Meal Project

Williamson, W.Va. - Students in Mingo County have the opportunity to eat breakfast and lunch at school at no cost. The county is participating in a program called the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). All schools in Mingo County continue to participate in the program.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released data reporting high levels of food insecurity and hunger across the country. In West Virginia, over 14 percent of residents live in food insecure households and more than 100,000 children live below the poverty line.

The CEP was enacted as a result of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act and provides universal meal service to children in high poverty areas. This is the fourth year for the option. The CEP is an alternative to collecting, approving and verifying household eligibility applications for free and reduced price eligible students in high poverty Local Education Agencies. If at least 40 percent of a school’s students are directly certified for free meal benefits, the entire school qualifies for the option.

Mingo County Schools is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

“Students who are well fed and ready to learn are an integral part of the One Voice, One Focus vision plan,” said West Virginia Superintendent of Schools Michael
Martirano. “Educational improvements in West Virginia schools include providing access to school meals so that all children have a chance to achieve. I am proud that Mingo County Schools will be participating in the CEP program and meeting a crucial need for student success in our state.”