Back to school: More kids will get free lunches

More kids are expected to receive free or reduced lunches and breakfasts this school year due to high unemployment and job losses. At least 18.5 million low-income children are expected to receive free or reduced lunches through the National School Lunch Program during the upcoming school year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Also, more than 8.5 million students are expected to receive meals through the federal School Breakfast Program.

Children from families that have incomes that are at or below 130% of the poverty level are eligible for free meals through the National School Lunch Program. Kids from households that have incomes between 130% and 185% of the poverty level are eligible for reduced-price meals. For example, during the past school year 130% of the poverty level was $27,560 for a family of four, and 185% was $39,220, according to the USDA.