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Free lunches are back, says Manitowoc Public School District

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Posted at 6:08 PM, Nov 01, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-01 20:31:00-04
  • Manitowoc Public Schools will once again serve free lunches to all students. CEP will be put into place on Monday, November 6th.
  • Superintendent Feil and the school board decided to opt back in to CEP after the last school board meeting. Supt. Feil said it had become a distraction.
  • Manitowoc Lincoln Principal, Micah Hoffman, welcomes the return. He says the program makes it easier to ensure all students are being fed.

Kids in Manitowoc are about to get free meals once again.

In the last month, we've followed Manitowoc Public Schools opt out of a free lunch program called C-E-P. Last week, administration decided to look into rejoining the program and submitted a late registration waiver to the federal government.

"As of yesterday, the US Department of agriculture approved the application," said Board Member, Kerry Trask. "It will be reinstated."

Trask says all that is left to do is cross some T's and dot some I's with the Wisconsin Department of Instruction for Manitowoc to rejoin C-E-P, which gives children free lunches.

"There's paperwork to do," said Trask. "There's a deadline of Novemeber 15th that that has to be in."

Manitowoc Lincoln principal, Micah Hoffman, is happy to hear C-E-P is back. Although every effort was made, he says without the program it can be hard to confirm every student is fed everyday.

"In the school, especially the high school, it can be harder to tell who is bowing out of a meal," said Principal Hoffman.

He says that with C-E-P, the school can fully focus on education.

"Any barriers we can remove from students for any reason so they can be more successful in school with their academics or other things," Hoffman said. "I'm all for it."

Last week, I sat down with superintendent Feil in an exclusive interview where he spoke to why he decided to opt back in.

"Unfortunately, this really... I wouldn't say set us back because we are very committed," said Feil. "But it consumed resources that it shouldn't have consumed."

"You know, we are really trying to focus on academic improvement," Kerry Trask said. "It seems the CEP program really is an ally in that effort."

The school district announced on Wednesday evening that C-E-P will officially be reinstated on Monday, November 6th.