We serve more than 4 million high-quality meals per year
Summer 2021 Meals
HCPSS will continue its free summer food service program to meet the growing need to feed hungry children and families in Howard County and fill the nutritional gap over the summer months. Grab-and-Go meals will be provided at no cost to HCPSS students and any children aged 18 and under.
Meals will be served Mondays and Thursdays, from June 21-August 13, at locations throughout the county.
In addition to the summer meal service for the public, free meals will be provided to all students participating in HCPSS summer programs at the 33 program locations.
Full details on summer 2021 meals are available online.
What’s on the menu?
HCPSS students and their families can now view menus and nutrition and allergen information for meals served in all HCPSS schools through Nutrislice, a website and free smartphone app.
Free and Reduced Meals (FARMs)
The HCPSS participates in the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs. Students from households that meet federal income guidelines are eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals. Those eligible for reduced-price meals pay $0.10 for breakfast and $0.20 for lunch.
Applications are available online or as a paper application. Parents must submit a new application every school year to maintain their student’s eligibility.
All meals available at no cost to families for the 2021-2022 school year
Paying for meals
On-site payments and prepayments may be made using cash or check. Families may prepay with a credit card by setting up an online account at myschoolbucks.com. This online portal also allows parents to view cafeteria account activity and receive balance alerts. There is a $2.49 processing fee for each transaction. Each transaction can be up to $120.00 in total.
Each student is assigned a unique, 6-digit cafeteria PIN, which remains the same every school year. If a student has forgotten their PIN, cashiers can look the PIN up by student name. This PIN allows HCPSS to receive reimbursements from the National School Lunch Program.
All meals purchased without a PIN will have an additional charge of $0.30 for breakfast and $0.60 for lunch.
Unpaid Meal Charges
Nutrition is essential to students’ mental, physical, and academic growth. HCPSS practice is to ensure that no student goes hungry or is traumatized for lack of funds. If a student forgets their lunch money, a meal will be provided and a charge will be applied to their meal account. Meals will never be taken away when there are no funds or a negative balance in a student’s meal account. However, parents/guardians are solely responsible for providing their student(s) with money for meals, or packing a meal from home. Parents/guardians are also responsible for prompt payment of outstanding balances. Meal account balances may be viewed at any time by logging in to MySchoolBucks. The expectation is that all meal charges owed to HCPSS Food and Nutrition Services will be paid in full.
More information is provided in Board of Education Policy 4200 Meal Charges.
NOTE: All meals will be available at no cost to families for the 2021-2022 school year. Meal prices are provided if students wish to purchase additional meals.
Breakfast and Lunch Daily Prices –
Breakfast – $2.00
Reduced Price Breakfast – $0.10 (Find out how to qualify)
Elementary School Lunch – $2.80
Middle/High School Lunch – $3.30
Reduced Price Lunch – $0.20 (Find out how to qualify)
Milk (1/2 pint) – $0.50
Faculty and Staff
Breakfast – $2.75
Regular Lunch – $4.50
The Board of Education of Howard County recognizes the connection between health and wellness and student achievement and that students need nourishing foods and physical activity in order to grow, learn, and thrive.
Nutritional and Allergen Concerns
We are sensitive to the various nutritional and dietary needs of students. In addition, we post all nutritional information for our meal choices online and in our Nutrislice mobile app.
Students with known food allergies (shellfish, tree nuts, gluten, lactose, etc.) need to have a formal notice of their allergies written up by a family physician and submitted to the school nurse. Students who would still like to purchase food from the cafeteria can have accommodations made that are suited to their allergies.
For all questions or concerns, feel free to contact our office at 410-313-7134.
We value feedback from parents and community members on meal choices, nutrition and wellness, and many other topics to improve our services.