School Breakfast Program

  • Pinellas County Schools is proud to provide breakfast for all students at no charge.  In order to promote breakfast, the district absorbs the cost of the meals at the 21 schools that are not qualified for the Community Eligibility Provision.

    A nutritious breakfast is the best way to start a day of learning. The School Breakfast Program is a federally funded program that helps participating schools provide breakfast to all students.

    Students, parents, and teachers enjoy the many benefits of the School Breakfast Program. Visit the NCSL website for more info on the benefits of school breakfast.

    How Does it Work?

    The federal government provides monetary assistance to states to operate nonprofit breakfast programs in schools. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers the School Breakfast Program at the federal level. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services administers the School Breakfast Program at the state level, and local school food authorities operate the program in schools.

    In Florida, each district school board must operate the School Breakfast Program in all elementary schools. School breakfast programs must be operated at no cost to the students in schools where 80% or more of the students enrolled are eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

    School Breakfast Changes

    The School Breakfast Program’s meal pattern is set by the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. This ensures fruit and whole grains are offered; meals supply appropriate calories for grades K-5, 6-8, and 9-12; and that the sodium content of meals is gradually being reduced.

    All school breakfasts must meet federal meal requirements, but decisions about which specific foods to serve and how they are prepared are made by the local school food authorities. The USDA has put into place the Transitional Standards Final Rule for milk, whole grains and sodium. The final rule is effective July 1, 2022, and will be implemented for the 2022-2023  school year. This new rule allows flexibility for schools recovering from the pandemic, and for the USDA to establish long-term standards for school meals that more comprehensively reflect the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. These rules allow at least 80% of weekly grains to be whole grain-rich, flavored low-fat milk (1%) in addition to unflavored low-fat milk and flavored or unflavored nonfat milk, and Target 1 to remain as the current sodium level for the 2022-2023 school year. See the resources for additional transitional standards guidance.

    In FY 2020, the SBP provided about 1.8 billion meals, 87.7 percent of which were served free or at a reduced price. This share was 2.7 percentage points more than in FY 2019. In FY 2021, the first full year of the pandemic, the program provided 1.4 billion meals, 99.4 percent of which were served free or at a reduced price. The increase in the share of meals served free or at a reduced price is in part attributable to a USDA pandemic waiver allowing for meals to be provided free of charge to students.

    In the 2022-2023 School Year, 140 participating school sites served:

     

    Total

    Daily Avg

     

    Breakfast

                    4,331,110

             24,062

     

    School Breakfast Resource Links