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Pricing Student Meals

Sponsors may operate as a charge or no-charge program. Charge programs establish and collect student payments. No-charge programs do not collect payments from students.

The sponsor has some discretion in establishing student meal prices. It is recommended that the established charge, at a minimum, cover the cost of producing the meal.

The maximum reduced-price meal charges are established by regulation and are currently $.40 for lunch, $.30 for breakfast, and $.15 for snack. The maximums equal the difference between the free reimbursement rate and the reduced-price reimbursement rate for each program. The reduced-price reimbursement rate is increased each year, but the maximum reduced price charge remains the same.

Sponsors may vary the reduced charge within the maximums allowed or choose not to collect it.

The Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act has a provision to gradually raise prices to the amount USDA reimburses for free meals. The follolwing memo has the current formula

horizonal rule

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North Dakota Department of Public Instruction
Kirsten Baesler, State Superintendent
600 E. Boulevard Avenue, Dept. 201
Bismarck, North Dakota 58505-0440

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