orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

Our Schools

June 1, 2013

School lunch prices on the rise

VIDOR — School lunch prices are on the rise once again at many local school districts.

The Vidor Independent School District and West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District will be increasing prices for school lunches for the coming school year, and another will meet in June to consider a price increase.

The Vidor Independent School District’s Board of Trustees voted to approve the lunch price increase request at its most recent school board meeting. This is the second price hike in three years.

“This is something the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) is having us do to get our pricing for paid students in line with the reimbursement the district receives for its free and reduced lunches to qualifying students,” said Gracie Clark, VISD’s director of food services. “We’re actually hoping we will be able to back off the pricing a little next year, but this is something we are basically being forced to do.”

Prices for lunches provided to students in Pre-Kindergarten through fourth-grade, at the district’s three elementary schools, will increase from $1.40 per lunch to $1.50 per lunch for the 2013-2014 school year. Lunches for students in grades 5 through 12 will increase to $1.70 per lunch, a 10-cent increase from the current rate of $1.60.

“We get reimbursed by the federal government for every free lunch we serve,” said Dr. Jay Killgo, Vidor ISD superintendent. “The USDA doesn’t like that we only charge a $1.40 for lunch. They want us to be more in line with the $2.75 reimbursement we get for each free meal. It’s just something we have to do, but we still have the lowest lunch prices in the area.”

Breakfast prices in Vidor ISD will remain unaffected.

The West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District will also increase lunch prices by 10-cents. Students at all three of the district’s campuses currently pay $2 for a lunch. The new rate of $2.10 will take affect in August.

Mike King, Bridge City ISD superintendent, said a price increase for lunches will happen during the summer for BCISD students for the beginning of next school year as well.

“We have not set next year’s lunch prices yet,” King said. “We do plan to do that at the June meeting. We have not completely determined these prices yet.”

Prices vary depending on grade level. Lunch at Bridge City Elementary is $1.95 per student, while it is $2.10 per lunch at BC Intermediate. The cost increases to $2.15 per lunch at middle school and $2.20 for lunch at high school.

The Little Cypress-Mauriceville Consolidated Independent School District has some of the highest lunch prices in the area.

Students attending Mauriceville Elementary, Little Cypress Elementary and Little Cypress Intermediate currently pay $2.25 per lunch, while students at Mauriceville Middle School and Little Cypress Junior High pay $2.50 per lunch. Students at LC-M High School have the most expensive lunch at $2.75.

Orangefield ISD prices will remain unchanged going into the new school year. Lunch costs $2 per student at Orangefield Elementary, while students at Orangefield Junior High and High School pay $2.50 for lunch.

Other districts across the region will also be increasing prices, according to the Region V Service Center in Beaumont. Lunch prices in both the Nederland Independent School District and Port Neches-Groves ISD will increase by 10-cents next school year, while, in Beaumont ISD, prices will jump by 25-cents per lunch.

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