*Photo provided by YMCA of Centre County. Many BASD teachers, including Rachael Davis, Heather Fry and Erin Chapman, volunteer with the organization's antihunger programs.
Meal options and food assistance for students, families during school closure
Free and reduced meal information
If current circumstances have changed or reduced your family income, there is help for families by applying for Free and Reduced lunches through the district's website. It secures benefits for students when school is in session and also assists the school district with securing resources for school closure meal programs to help your family. This free service enables families to receive program benefits faster than the traditional paper application. Information to apply online can be found, here: Food service. You may also contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com for student ID information used on the application form.
Free breakfast and lunch options
Bellefonte Area School District is working with the YMCA of Centre County that will provide "drop and go" bagged lunches, which include a lunch and snack in one pack for children. It will be available noon to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. Visit this link to learn more: YMCA meal programs
- Beaver Farms Apartment Complex
- Continental Courts (playground pavilion)
- Governor’s Gate Apartments
- Logan Fire Company
- Pleasant Gap Elementary School
- Pleasant Gap Fire Company (carnival grounds)
- YMCA in Bellefonte
Through the National School Lunch Program’s Seamless Summer Option, free meals are also available for families and children ages 18 and younger. A breakfast and lunch will be provided noon to 1 p.m. March 24-27 at Marion-Walker Elementary School. These meals are provided on a first come, first serve basis. Children must be present for meals to be provided. Please see this link for more information about safety protocol and what the meals will include: Free meals
On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Bellefonte Area School District provides free meals to families with ready-to-cook meal options. Food Service Director Laura Frye said the meals are prepared by district staff and can be picked up at the the same meal locations by the YMCA. Meals includes a packaged entree with directions for heating, in addition to multiple sides and snacks.
The state Department of Education is also offering a Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program. Please click here to learn more: P-EBT. According to PDE, it provides temporary benefits to families of school-aged children who would receive free or reduced-priced meals if school was in session. For each day school is closed, eligable families can receive the equivalent of the free high rate for lunch and the severe need rate for breakfast. Specifically, a family will receive $5.70 for each eligible school-aged child in their family for each day school has been closed since March 16, 2020.
Other services are in the works as the district and other local agencies work to get approval from the state. You may find other food assistance resources available, here: Food pantries*Every "drop and go" site must be approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, which is the overseer of the program from the United States Department of Agriculture. The YMCA is also looking for volunteers to help in this effort. If interested, please contact Mel Curtis at firstname.lastname@example.org. All volunteers who distribute meals also wear masks and gloves.