SANTA FE – Funding for summer meal programs for children in New Mexico will be extended for the foreseeable future, state officials said.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved a waiver allowing the food programs to continue for as long as funding lasts for all children in the state, regardless of whether they qualify for income-based programs.
“This is a huge relief for many New Mexico families who might not qualify for free meals but are still facing hard times because of this pandemic,” said Public Education Secretary Ryan Stewart. “Now feeding their children is one less worry.”
Most of the state’s 89 school districts have no in-person learning, though a few elementary schools started Sept. 8. But all school districts have continued to offer free meals, delivering them along school routes or creating distribution sites where parents can pick them up.
About 13 million meals have been picked up by families or delivered to them since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, according to the governor’s office.