Largest Oklahoma district discusses free supper for high schoolers

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma City schools are looking at a proposal to feed their students a third meal - supper.

It’s an idea under consideration right now, and one district official said would not cost the district any money.

"There are many students we have where the only time they eat is at school, so giving them an extra meal is a huge nutritional difference,” said Carrie Coppernoll Jacobs, Oklahoma City Public School District board member.

Ninety percent of students in Oklahoma City Public Schools qualify for the free and reduced lunch program with around 30,000 using it.

At a board meeting Monday night, the head of nutrition for schools proposed the idea.

It would start as a pilot program at a couple of schools before being implemented district wide.

"It's a federally funded program, so it's at zero cost to the school district, so it would be grab and go meals for high school students," she said.

The idea is still in the early stage.

Right now, they're just looking at menu options.

"They want it to be nutritional food, healthy food but things that kids also want to eat and things that they can just take and leave," Coppernoll Jacobs said.

Sarai Cervantes is a busy senior involved in several sports.

Sometimes, she doesn't eat until late, if at all.

"Some of us don't get any lunch. We don't bring our money or something. We have to wait until like 5 or 6 in the afternoon to like go home and get food,” said Cervantes at U.S. Grant High School.

She said she would use the program.

"It would be really nice for everyone here, especially the athletes who just go home and they don't eat sometimes, especially if it's nutritional, because we actually have to stay fit," Cervantes said.

"In tough budget times when we are having to cut and cut and cut, adding something like this is a really big deal, and I'm hopeful for it."

Again, the supper program is still in the planning stages.

No word on what schools would be a part of the pilot program or when it could start.

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