The New York City Department of Education (DOE) is pleased to announce that starting this school year, lunch is now completely free for all students in every New York City public school. Breakfast is already provided for free and now all meals will be served at no charge to families.

We need your help to make this program a success. All parents, regardless of income, must still complete a School Meals Form so that our schools get access to federal funding for this program and others. Please complete the form online at by December 29, 2018. A hardcopy of the form will also be sent home and is available at your school’s main office.

If you have already added money to your MySchoolBucks account for your child’s lunches this year, or if you have a balance remaining from prior years, you will receive a full refund. DOE will follow up with information on how to get your refund in the coming weeks.

Please join us in spreading the word that breakfast and lunch are free for all students every day. I hope your child will take advantage of this wonderful new opportunity and come enjoy a healthy meal with us.


Our nutrition standards always meet, and many times exceed, USDA Nutrition Standards for School Meals. We do not use food additives such as artificial colors or flavors, non-nutritive sweeteners, or preservatives. Additionally, we restrict high fructose corn syrup where feasible. Click here to view our current list of prohibited ingredients.

Water consumption is also an important factor in a highly nutritious diet. Because behavioral patterns are established at an early age, encouraging children to drink water can play an important role in addressing childhood obesity. SchoolFood offers water to every student via a variety of sources during meal service.

Water jet machines, which are available in over 800 school cafeterias, are just one way students can easily obtain cold, fresh tap water free of charge. With the support of the Mayor’s Obesity Task Force, we’re aiming to add additional water jets in schools to reach the vast majority of students.

 Ultimately, SchoolFood’s monthly menus and water services are created to ensure that students receive the proper nutrients they need to think clearly, concentrate on learning, and perform better in class.