Universal School Meals
State of School Meal Programs in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties, School Year 2022-2023
The 2022-2023 school year was the first year of implementation of California’s Free School Meals for All policy, where all students in California, regardless of income eligibility, are able to eat breakfast and lunch for free in perpetuity. Across San Mateo and Santa Clara counties, 235,000 students became newly eligible for free school meals and this policy change represents a substantial opportunity to improve food security for children and families. During School Year 2022-2023 school meal programs stopped operating under COVID-era USDA waivers and fully operationalized California’s policy. This report details food service directors' experiences during the first year of implementation.
Why School Breakfasts Matter
This fact sheet provides information on the benefits of school breakfast and alternative breakfast service models to help increase breakfast participation.
Universal Meals Resource Hub
Online resources to support food service directors and staff in implementing California's universal school meals program.
Universal School Meals are Coming to California!
All public school children in California can eat school meals - totally free of charge! School meals support student learning and health. Universal meals, where all students can eat school meals for free, have been shown to improve student diet quality, academic performance, attendance, and to reduce food insecurity.
Learn more about California's new universal meal program, the school nutrition environment and the meal standards, and see answers to frequently asked questions for parents and caregivers here: http://ucanr.edu/cesanmateo.ucanr.edu/schoolmeals