By Jeff Neagle
On Thursday, Adair County Superintendent Dr. Pamela Stephens announced that the Adair County School System has partnered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Baylor University to provide meals for students during the school shutdown.
“[Board of Education Treasurer] Carol Roy has given me some information today and we are thrilled that the board wants to provide food and nutrition to our students even during the time while school is closed. This program is called Meals-to-You. Students enrolled in the Adair County Schools are eligible to participate in this program,” said Stephens.
Every other week, each student who is signed up will receive a Meals-to-You box delivered to their home. The box will contain 10 breakfasts and 10 lunches, the amount of meals the schools would serve the student in two weeks if school were in session.
“All of these foods are shelf stable, which means you don’t have to worry about there being an expiration date anytime soon nor do you have to worry about refrigeration,” Stephens continued. “The meals are kid friendly meals. They are delivered for free directly to your door. If you are not home the day the meals are delivered, that’s not a worry. These boxes are packed for security and because the food is shelf stable, you don’t have to worry about refrigerating the food immediately.”
Some sample items that will be included in the boxes are beef sticks, bean dip, cheese, chicken salad, tortilla chips, oatmeal bars, cereals, salsa cup, applesauce, raisins, milk and fruit juice.
The meals do not require any cooking. The program is designed to ensure that students are receiving nutritional meals while schools are shut down and allow families not to have to worry about extra trips to the grocery store, extra money spent on food, or extra time planning meals. The program came about due to the COVID-19 pandemic which caused the shutdown of schools across the country.
If no one is able to be at home when the box is scheduled to arrive, Stephens suggested asking a neighbor or other family members to get the box for you so that you know the food will be there once your return back home.
“One thing I want all parents to understand, this benefit will not affect any other benefits you might be receiving at this time,” Stephens clarified.
Enrollment dates for the program are from Tuesday, May 26 to Friday, May 29. Enrolling online is the only way to register to receive the meal boxes. An application must be filled out for each student in the household. The program will last until whichever of the following comes first: June 30, or the date you return to school on campus, or the federally declared public health emergency measures are lifted.
The school district has a link to the application at their website https://www.adair.kyschools.us/. The direct link to the application is https://mealstoyou.org/emergency-meals-to-you-application/. Once on the application page, the program has a video you must watch that will give you step by step instruction on filling out the application.
Stephens stated, “If anyone has any questions, we ask that you call the board of Education at the number on the website. Again, we are thrilled that Miss Carol was able to get us on the list and our students and families will be able to participate in this. It is a win for everyone.”