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National School Lunch Program Feeds 30 Million Children

In the 2006-07 school year, over 30 million school children, 57 percent of the U.S. population age 5-17, participated in USDA’s National School Lunch Program. Iowa, Kentucky, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota had the highest participation rates—above 75 percent. Income-eligible students can receive lunches for free or at a reduced price. Nationally, 54 percent of students participating in the program received a free or reduced-price lunch in 2006-07. Colorado, Maryland, and New Jersey had some of the lowest overall participation rates and were among the 21 States where less than half of the participants received free and reduced-priced lunches.