Batavia school lunches are apparently too good a deal, by federal standards.
To comply with federal law, the district has to raise the prices of its lunches. The school board agreed Tuesday to raise them 10 cents per meal, starting Jan. 1.
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Batavia participates in the National School Lunch Program. Under the 2010 "Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act," districts that receive federal reimbursement for lunches for poor children have to make sure the prices of the "regular" lunches are equitable, so that the federal money doesn't end up subsidizing the other students' programs.
The current federal reimbursement is $2.80 a lunch; Batavia charges $2.20 for elementary and middle-school lunches, and $2.50 for the high school.
Administrators had proposed raising prices Nov. 1., but board member Sue Locke said that was too soon. Even though it is just a 10-cent change, "over the course of a month that adds up," she said.
Board member Melanie Impastato said she wants the communications sent to parents to reflect that the board did not want to raise prices.
The money raised will stay with the district and be used to offset the cost of paying lunchroom aides, said Kris Monn, the assistant superintendent for finance.
The federal government does allow the price increases to be phased in over several years, Monn said.