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News >  Spokane

Spokane schools will have free meals for all students ready by Thursday

Spokane Public Schools is rolling out a plan to begin distributing lunches and breakfasts to students beginning Thursday.

Even as schools closed Monday afternoon, the district was able to distribute an extra 2,000 meals thanks to help from Second Harvest and Bite 2 Go.

“We’re doing what we do, and that’s to feed kids the best way we can,” said Doug Wordell, director of nutrition services for the district.

“I also believe this is a great opportunity for the community to work together,” said Wordell, who noted that Second Harvest has added $15,000 toward feeding children while school is suspended during the coronavirus outbreak.

The need is great: 57% of the district’s 31,000 students receive free and reduced-price meals.

After Gov. Jay Inslee ordered schools to close beginning Tuesday, the district announced that food distribution wouldn’t be ready until next week.

However, after working through the weekend, Wordell and his staff were able to firm up food distribution plans and post them on the district’s website.

Beginning Thursday, every child in Spokane is eligible to pick up meals from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at one of 16 sites.

They include Finch, Hutton, Lidgerwood, Lincoln Heights, Moran Prairie, Mullan Road, Garfield, Ridgeview, Roosevelt, Longfellow, Arlington and Balboa elementary schools; Shaw Middle School and, Rogers, Shadle Park and Ferris high schools.

Meal packets will include lunch and the following day’s breakfast.

All meals will be shelf-stable, Wordell said, and typically will include a fruit snack, a microwavable entrée such as ravioli, beef jerky and other nutrition.

The meals cost the district about $5 each.

The program is expected to expand next week, said Wordell, who hopes to use buses for drop-offs at community centers and apartment complexes.

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