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Percent of Students Eligible for Free or Reduced Lunch

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The National School Lunch Program helps alleviate food insecurity for millions of low-income children eachyear by providing nutritious free or reduced priced meals at schools and child care facilities for qualified families.  Children from families with incomes at or below 130 percent of the federal poverty level are eligible to receive free meals, while those with incomes between 131 percent and 185 percent are eligible to receive reduced price meals.  Nationwide, nearly 100,000 public and private schools participate in the program and it is available in nearly 99 percent of all public schools.  Inadequate nutrition and hunger are often barriers to academic success.

Percent of Students Eligible for Free or Reduced Lunch

The Top 10 results for 2012 (ranked by % Eligible)

County% EligibleStudents Eligible for Free or Reduced LunchSchool District PopulationYearSchool District
St. Clair County95.62012East St Louis
Madison County95.12012Venice
St. Clair County95.02012Brooklyn
Madison County92.82012Madison
St. Clair County90.22012Cahokia
St. Louis County87.92012Normandy
St. Louis County87.92012Riverview Gardens
St. Louis County85.02012Jennings
St. Louis City83.82012St. Louis Public
St. Louis County74.72012Hancock Place

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Students in both Missouri and Illinois are eligible for a free lunch if they live below 130% of poverty, and a reduced lunch if they are between 131% -and 185% of the federal poverty level.
*St. Louis County has an independent school district serving children with special needs. Districts in St. Louis City, St. Charles County, St. Clair County and Madison County serve special needs children within schools.
** Formerly St. Charles Co. R-V
*** Belleville, Freeburg, O’Fallon, and East Alton school districts in Illinois are not unit districts. For the purpose of this report, we have combined the elementary, middle, and high school districts.
****Data Not Available

MO: 41.8%
Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (SY 2005 - 2006)
IL: 46.9%
Illionois State Board of Education (SY 2005 - 2006)