The new school year has started for many students in California, and the state is officially the first to offer free meals to all students.
Ahead of the 2022-2023 school year, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law legislation that establishes a universal meal program. Under the new law, all kindergarten through 12th grade public schools must provide two free meals, breakfast and lunch, during each school day to students requesting a meal, regardless of the student's free or reduced-price meal eligibility.
In addition to making free meals available to all, the law also provides $150 million in funding to support kitchen infrastructure upgrades and nutrition related staff training for districts preparing to implement the universal meals program.