Giving Compass’ Take:
• School districts, particularly in rural areas, are employing bus drivers to help distribute meals to students who would not otherwise get them throughout the day.
• How can donors help expand these programs across districts and states in regions that struggle with food security?
• Read more about coronavirus and food access.
When Utah Gov. Gary Herbert put all K-12 public schools under a soft close earlier this month to help mitigate the spread of novel coronavirus, the Duchesne County School District saw two potential problems: How would students have access to free breakfast and lunch? And what would happen to school support staff who depend on the income?
While some districts have kept schools open for children to come get meals during the school day, that raised transportation concerns in Duchesne’s rural, 5,300-student district spanning about 70 miles.
“So, we decided that the best thing we could do would be to get those meals out to the kids, and to keep our bus drivers working, we could have them deliver the meals to their normal bus stops,” said Scott Forsyth, the district’s student services director.
Kitchen staff and teachers’ aides get to keep their jobs, too. Each morning, the employees work together to prepare meals and load them up on the buses to deliver. And at each bus stop, the children get to see familiar faces when the bus drivers and aides give them their food.
As bus drivers in some school districts have been laid off or wait in limbo to see whether they’ll be paid for the duration of the shutdowns, Duchesne is one of many districts that has found a creative way to keep bus drivers employed.
Read the full article about keeping bus drivers employed by Natalie Gross at Education Dive.
K-12 Education is a complex topic, and others found these selections from the Impact Giving archive from Giving Compass to be good resources.
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