Cove: District dishing out free breakfast next school year

COPPERAS COVE, Texas One local school district is ending the school year with big news going into the next.

Photo By: Chelsea Edwards

Cove parents will be able to keep more change in their pockets because of a new free breakfast program.

In Copperas Cove ISD, breakfast may be one of the best reasons to get up early.

Clements/Parsons Elementary second-grader Kylar agrees.

"I don't want to be late, and I love the breakfast here," she says.

Meals like banana yogurt boats and theme days let kids fill up on fun, and while the $1.50 price tag may not sound like much, it can add up to more than $1,000 a year.

"We do have quite a few children who are not able to pay, however they still receive a breakfast," says Earline Beeksma, Clements/Parsons Cafeteria Manager.

"Our children always eat no matter what."

But soon, money won't be a factor for parents when it comes to the 4,000 meals that go out each morning.

Starting the 2019-2020 school year, the district announced it's serving breakfast for every student who wants it for free.

"It's a win-win for us because kids get to eat, and when they're sitting in class their stomachs are not grumbling, and they can actually focus on what's being taught by the teacher," says Melissa Bryan, Director of Child Nutrition of CCISD.

More and more kids had been showing up to eat free breakfast on testing days which left her hungry for more.

"I thought, we need to be able to do something for the kids in the district- not just on STAAR testing days- but every day," says Bryan.

She met with other directors across Texas and took notes from their universal breakfast programs where they increased federal and state reimbursements to balance their budgets.

So this coming August, every Cove kid, from pre-k through 12th grade can fill up on specialties like "fruit loop flippers", and get a sweet, no-cost start to their day.