More than 50,000 NC students will get healthy school breakfasts thanks to new funding

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By Leah Sherrell

March 1, 2024

In North Carolina, one in six children does not have consistent access to food. These grants will expand schools’ ability to provide them with breakfast. 

Gov. Roy Cooper announced $1.3 million in new state grants this week to help schools across the state expand breakfast options to more than 50,000 students.

The funds, from the NC Innovative School Breakfast Grants program, will go to 42 public school districts and charter schools to buy new kitchen equipment, increase meal prep capacity, and make sure every student has the chance to eat breakfast.

In North Carolina, one in six children does not have consistent access to food and 60% of public school students qualify for free or reduced-priced meals. 

“From reducing chronic absenteeism to improving reading achievement, small changes in how school breakfast is served can make big impacts on student success,” said the director of the Carolina Hunger Initiative—an organization that partners with local communities in North Carolina to expand residents’ access to healthy food

The schools and districts were selected by the Carolina Hunger Initiative and the NC Alliance for Health, a nonpartisan group hoping to promote healthier lives in North Carolina.  

The districts and schools are part of the Community Eligibility Provision, which provides free meals at schools with a high percentage of low-income students. The program includes creative initiatives to encourage students to eat breakfast, including Breakfast, Grab and Go Breakfast, and Classroom breakfast.

The Innovative School Breakfast Grants continue to expand students’ access to nutritious meals and their ability to learn.

According to Morgan Wittman Gramann, the Executive Director of the NC Alliance for Health, the grants will  “enable schools to find creative ways to make sure that every child has the nutrition that they need to focus on learning.”


  • Leah Sherrell

    Leah Sherrell is a multimedia reporter for Cardinal & Pine. A graduate of UNC-Wilmington, she's a resident of Kernersville with a background in video production and communication. Leah uses many forms of media to explore the multifaceted lifestyles and cultures present in North Carolina.



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