Cost of School Lunch Increases 25 Cents to $2.75 for High School

April 7, 2015, 4:01 PM HST · Updated April 8, 12:43 AM
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By Maui Now Staff

Student lunch and breakfast prices will increase by 25 cents and 10 cents, respectively next school year at public schools in Hawaiʻi due to inflation and labor costs, the state Department of Education announced today.

The price hike is the first increase since 2011, and is in accordance with a 2009 state law that requires the state DOE to charge at least half the cost of meal preparation.

Reduced-price meals served to economically disadvantaged students will remain unchanged at 30 cents for breakfast and 40 cents for lunch. Students who qualify for free meals also will not be impacted.

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The new prices were approved today by the Hawaiʻi Board of Education and are being implemented to offset higher food costs and agreed labor contract raises.

The following meal costs were approved by the state BOE:

Meal
Current
SY 2015-16
Breakfast K-8
$1.00
$1.10
Breakfast 9-12
$1.10
$1.20
Breakfast (second meal and adult)
$2.20
$2.40
Lunch K-8
$2.25
$2.50
Lunch 9-12
$2.50
$2.75
Lunch (second meal and adult)
$5.00
$5.50

“In order for our schools to continue to provide quality meals for our students, the food we provide can not be heavily processed,” said Dann Carlson, assistant superintendent for School Facilities and Support Services in a department press release. “Serving nutritious food made by our staff is better for our students but it comes at a cost.”

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Department officials say steps have been taken to reduce the cost of school meals, including the use of a centralized vendor to leverage larger purchasing power for better prices.

The DOE currently serves more than 100,000 meals daily during the school year.

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