NU Board updated on free, reduced lunch program


Bev Wasserbeck, food service director for North Union, presented a report to the board of education at North Union’s regular meeting Monday night.

She stated that 38.7% of North Union students are enrolled in the Free and Reduced Lunch Program. She also said that she doesn’t think everyone understands the importance of the program to the school district.

At the beginning of the school year, students bring home several papers for parents to fill out and return to school. One of those forms includes an application to the lunch program.

The district goes through the National School Lunch Program and the State of Ohio then manages the funds for each school.

Wasserbeck said that families should fill out the form even if they don’t think they would qualify. Some people have worried their children would be bullied or picked on if others knew they were on the reduced program. When a child goes through the lunch line, they are given a pin number and when they enter the lunch line, they type in their pin number, so that no one knows who is taking advantage of the lunch program.

The school district is reimbursed for all meals that are served, so that that helps family budgets to have money for other things. The school gets paid for qualifying meals that are served, so it benefits the parents and school.

This summer, the school is supplying summer lunches free for all kids 18 and under, Monday through Friday, at Richwood Park, Richwood-North Union Public Library and at the Magnetic Springs United Methodist Church. Approximately 80 to over 100 attend each day. This program is also reimbursed for each meal served.

The Ohio Department of Education does an audit every three years. The things they look at are the Free and Reduced Lunch applications, double check the claims of meals served, see that the correct portions are served and that the schools serve choices in all five components: meat, grain, fruit, vegetables and milk. Each student must take three of the five options to see that they meet the guidelines of the program.

The board also approved several contracts for new hires for the 2019-2020 school year. Those hired include: Amy Eastman, five-hour special education assistant-secretary; Linda Harper, high school sweeper/cleaner; Tara Allen, elementary school intervention specialist; Talia McKinniss, elementary school intervention specialist; Heather Godwin, high school intervention specialist; Nicole Haglock, elementary school intervention spsecialist-1st grade; Anna Baker, elementary school—music and band; Katelyn Bruner, middle school 7th grade math; Melissa Nichols, middle school 7th grade ELA.

Erika Bower, chief academic officer, was raised to Step 5. Rich Baird, superintendent, was also raised to Step 5, effective Aug. 1, 2019.

In other business, the board:

•Approved student fee rates for the 2019-2020.

•Approved the agreement for a shared District Food Service Supervisor with Ridgemont Local School District for the 2019-2020.

•Accepted the resignation of Holly Kuba as high school teaching aid.

•Approved the 2019-2020 school year calendar to reflect if the Board of Elections requests the use of the buildings for poling purposes on election days.

•Heard of the update of employment classification for Candace Hunt as Secretary “A” scale, effective the 2019-2020 school year.

•Approved the District Strategic Plan as facilitated by the Ohio School Board Association and developed by a core team of 41 stakeholders.

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