NC Budget and Tax Center, Poverty and Policy Matters

Public schools across North Carolina adopt universal meal programs

With a new school year approaching, many local school boards across North Carolina will join an effort to help end childhood hunger. For the 2014-15 school year the nation-wide Community Eligibility Program (CEP) allows high-poverty North Carolina schools to eliminate collecting school meal applications and offer breakfast and lunch to all of their students at no charge.

One in five American schoolchildren can’t count on getting enough nutritious food at home, which can have a negative impact on a student’s academic performance and development. Ensuring that children show up in classrooms each day fed and ready to learn increases the chances of students being more focused, attentive, and engaged.

At least 36 school systems across North Carolina have confirmed their plans to adopt CEP for the upcoming school year. (See map below) Some local school boards plan to adopt CEP district-wide while others will offer a universal meal program in selected schools within their district.


A big kudos goes to these school systems that will adopt CEP next year. This serves as a positive step in helping ensure that all North Carolina students are afforded a high-quality, enriching education.

A listing of all North Carolina school districts and individual schools that are eligible for community eligibility for the 2014-15 school year can be found via the NC Department of Public Instruction website.


  1. Alex

    July 29, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    It’s amazing to me how many people we’ve added to the poverty rolls during the Obama presidency ! We’ve become a very poor nation in just 6 years.

  2. david esmay

    July 29, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    Thanks to the policies adopted by 24 years of a Rubepublican dominated House and 34 years failed conservative economic policy!

  3. vince

    July 30, 2014 at 9:02 am

    Alex, this is something that has been building over the last couple decades, it is a long-term problem with causes are numerous and complex – it’s just as much Reagan’s and the Bushes’s fault

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