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School meals free for all K-12 students in 48 counties impacted by hurricane

Posted on Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 9:59 am

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture accepted a request to allow all students in 48 counties subject to a FEMA Major Disaster Declaration, including Osceola, access to free school meals through the National School Lunch Program.

These changes, in effect until Oct. 20, will potentially impact over 3,000 schools and 2.5 million children. The department is requesting additional flexibilities as counties are being declared major disaster areas and as requests are submitted by counties. As such, additional counties could be added to the waiver in the coming days.

All students in the following counties can access free school meals through the National School Lunch Program: Charlotte, Collier, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Pinellas, Broward, Palm Beach, Glades, Hendry, Sarasota, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns, Brevard, Citrus, DeSoto, Hardee, Hernando, Highlands, Indian River, Lake, Marion, Martin, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Pasco, Polk, St. Lucie, Seminole, Sumter, Volusia, Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Columbia, Dixie, Gilchrist, Lafayette, Levy, Nassau, Suwannee and Union.

Parents or guardians can find additional information by contacting the department at 1-800-504-6609 or