FAQ: Child Nutrition at BCSD – Fall 2022

The Bethlehem Central School District Food Service Department web page includes comprehensive, up-to-date information about child nutrition at BC. You can find the Food Services page here. Below are some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about meals for the upcoming school year.

Will breakfast and lunch meals still be free for all students in 2022-23?

Beginning this fall, the Food Services programs at BCSD will go back to operating as they did prior to March 2020. Breakfast and lunch will be available to all students, however, these meals will not be free for all students in 2022-23.

If your family meets the income guidelines to be approved for free meals at school, you will need to complete the Application for Free/Reduced Meals which can be found at the links below. If you receive a letter from the school stating your child has been approved through direct certification this means your child will receive free meals, and that you will NOT need to complete this application. These letters will be sent out by the last week of August 2022.

How will lunch meals at school work this fall?

All BC students will be back to eating in the cafeteria this fall. Students can purchase lunch at school or parents may choose to send lunch from home. There is no pre-ordering and students/parents can decide daily which option they will choose to ensure their student has a lunch meal available.

  • Elementary: Teachers will take a lunch count in the morning to give the kitchen staff an estimated serving total for the day, however, students are able change their selection at lunchtime if they prefer. Younger students are identified by classroom and picture ID and older students enter their student ID numbers in a keypad at the lunch line. This is how students can access their school meal account to make purchases.
  • MS & HS: Students will be going through the lunch line without pre-ordering their meals. All options are available as per the menu.

What are the prices for meals and snacks?

School lunch costs $3 for elementary students and $3.25 for middle school students, and  $3.50 for high school students. Milk costs $0.50. Breakfast costs $1.75 for elementary students, $2 for middle school students and $2.50 for high school students. Adult meals cost $2.75 for breakfast and $4.50 for lunch, including tax.

All meal pricing is available on the Food Service page of the District’s website. A la carte/Snack menus will be available on the website soon.

How can I pay for my child’s lunch and snack?

To minimize the need to handle cash, we are recommending the use of MySchoolBucks. All children have an individual MySchoolBucks account that parents can put money into rather than sending in lunch money daily. Money will be withdrawn from your child’s account when they purchase lunch or a snack. You can set up account e-mail notifications to alert you when this account runs low. Students are allowed to borrow if they do not have funds for meals. We automatically email you when your student’s balance goes below zero. You can add funds to your child’s account by:

  1. Online with MySchoolBucks ($2.75 fee per transaction). See District’s Website for more instructions and how to sign up for this service.
  2. Check sent to school. Checks should be made payable to “BC School Lunch”, in an envelope marked with the child’s name and “lunch”. Checks should be handed into classroom teachers. We strongly discourage sending cash payments to school with your child(ren).

Will breakfast be available at school?

Yes, breakfast will be available at the start of the school day at all levels. Unless approved for free meals at school, your child will be charged for a breakfast meal based on their building level. Please check with your child’s school office regarding how and when your child can access breakfast meal service.

How do I check to see if my child(ren) is approved for free meals at school and/or how do I apply for this benefit?

You can fill out a Free And Reduced application which islinked below. You will receive a letter from the Food Service Department whether you have been approved or denied. If you have any further questions you can call the Food Service Department at 518-439-8885 or email Manon Desjardins, mdesjardins@bethlehemschools.org