SFUSD to Provide Free Meals for Students During Closure of Schools
San Francisco (March 13, 2020) - The San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) will continue to provide nutritious meals to all students who need them during the temporary closure of schools. Beginning Tuesday, March 17, SFUSD will provide free breakfast and lunch to all children 18 and younger at 8 pick-up sites across San Francisco. On Wednesday, March 18, SFUSD will add 6 more sites and on Thursday, March 19, SFUSD will add another 4 sites for a total of 18 sites.
SFUSD will recess schools for all students preK-12 effective Monday, March 16 through the end of the regularly scheduled spring break (April 3). This will be a 3-week school closure for students. On Monday, March 16 SFUSD will be finalizing the set-up, training staff, and cleaning the locations where pick-up meals will be provided.
“We are committed to continuing to provide healthy meals for our students over the next several weeks while students are not in school,” SFUSD Superintendent Dr. Vincent Matthews said. “We are grateful for the support we already receive to make this happen, and would appreciate additional support from the community to help us keep our students fed.”
SFUSD is planning to coordinate these efforts with the SF Department of Emergency Management. In addition, SFUSD is collaborating with the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank and exploring the option of co-locating food pantries at sites where students will receive free meals. This would allow adults to access groceries at the sites too.
“Now, more than ever, it is important that we are able to get healthy food out to the community,” said San Francisco-Marin Food Bank Executive Director Paul Ash. “We are collaborating closely with SFUSD and will be working to provide food pantry distributions at all of the sites that remain open."
Packaged meals for pick-up and take-away will be available Monday through Friday on a first-come, first-serve basis. Breakfast and lunch will be served with vegetables, fresh fruit and milk. Shelf-stable meals will also be available. Students can pick up breakfast and lunch between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. Monday through Friday. Students will not need to enter the school building for pick-up.
SFUSD will have the capacity to serve 11,600 breakfasts and 11,600 lunches each day, and is exploring options to provide supper. A U.S. Department of Agriculture waiver allows SFUSD to provide multiple days worth of breakfasts and lunches for students to eat off-site. However, this waiver does not support after school meals, which almost 10,000 SFUSD students rely on every day.
As of now, the free meals for students will be available through Friday, March 27. SFUSD is exploring options to continue this service through regularly scheduled spring break, from March 30 through April 3. Donations can be made online at sfusd.edu/schoolfood to support our meal programs.
A list of pick-up sites and schedules is available at sfusd.edu/schoolfood.
SFUSD and City organizations are working together to identify childcare options for families. More information will be shared about this soon.