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Free meals waivers extended through end of school year

The move will provide no-cost meals to all children at 90,000 sites across the country until June 30, 2021.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this Thursday, May 4, 2017 file photo, a third-grader punches in her student identification to pay for a meal at Gonzales Community School in Santa Fe, N.M. All students are offered the same lunch at Gonzales and other Santa Fe public schools to avoid any chance of embarrassing students whose parents may have fallen behind on meal payments. In April 2017, New Mexico became the first state to outlaw the shaming of children for any unpaid meals. (AP Photo/Morgan Lee)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is extending waivers for free meals for all children through the end of the 2020-21 school year due to the coronavirus pandemic, the department announced last week.

“As our nation recovers and reopens, we want to ensure that children continue to receive the nutritious breakfasts and lunches they count on during the school year wherever they are and however they are learning," Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement.

The move will provide no-cost meals to all children at 90,000 sites across the country until June 30, 2021, the USDA said.

The waivers include allowing meals to be served outside of the typically required group settings and meal times and allows parents to pick up meals for their children.

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