According to a slide presentation from the Kentucky Department of Education at the June 2, 2020 meeting of the Interim Joint Committee on Education, after the Corona Virus caused general school shutdowns, Kentucky’s public school system still provided school lunches to 303,936 students during the month of April 2020.
It’s an impressive figure, and undoubtedly a lot of the state’s school-aged children are better nourished as a consequence.
But, it looks like a lot of kids who qualify for the school lunch program didn’t get any help. Evidence for that comes from other data from the Kentucky Department of Education.
The 2019-2020 enrollment figures have not been publicly released, but the enrollment data for the 2018-19 school year is readily available to the public, and the 2019-20 figures probably won’t be much different.
According to the Kentucky Department of Education’s Kentucky Education Facts web page, the total public school enrollment in 2018-19 was 648,369.
According to the same web page, 60.70% of that total 2018-19 enrollment, which calculates out to 393,560 students, was eligible for free or reduced-price meals in public schools that year.
Compared to the April 2020 lunch statistics reported to the education committee, that implies around 89,000 kids who normally get school lunches were not served during the Corona Virus crisis. That’s a lot of children who could be going hungry right now.
I wonder how/if the state’s educators are doing anything special to try to locate and feed these missing kids. Like I said, that’s a lot of kids who could be going hungry right now.