School's Out...Who Ate?

School's Out...Who Ate? is CFPA's
annual report on summer nutrition in California.

CFPA Primary Contact

Anna Colby
Nutrition Policy Advocate
Los Angeles Office
213.482.8200 ext. 204

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2017 School's Out...Who Ate?

California Kids Risk Summer Hunger

For most of us, summertime brings up picturesque images of sunshine, fun and relaxation. But for many of California's low-income children, summer comes with a burden.

When school's out and the summer begins, nearly 1.7 million low-income children in California lose access to nutritious meals that support their health and ability to reach their full academic potential. In 2016, 85% of the children and youth who benefited from free or reduced-price lunches during the school-year missed out on similar lunches during the summer.

Healthy summer meals support student health and their ability to learn throughout the summer and when school is back in session. Increased participation in the summer meal programs could also bring tens of millions of dollars in federal funding to California. Luckily, there are several actions policymakers and community leaders can take to bring the benefits of summer meals to more children in California.

CFPA Recommends:

Support Immigrant Families: Immigrant families may be less likely to show up for summer meals due to immigration concerns. Policy solutions should be considered to foster safe spaces for these families during the summer. In the meantime, sponsors and community partners can take action now to promote a welcoming summer meal environment.

Expand Summer EBT for Children: By expanding Summer EBT for Children, low-income families with children will receive a few extra dollars to support tightened grocery budgets during the summer months. This is especially important for families who do not live near a summer meal site or have transportation issues.

Protect Expanded Learning Programs: Expanded learning programs provide academic and enrichment opportunities for high-need students, support working families, and keep kids safe and well-nourished during the summer and after school.

Elevate the Role of Nutrition for Academic Success: Healthy and well-nourished children are more likely to attend class, be ready to learn, stay engaged, and perform well in school.The state’s flexible education spending structure allows districts to support summer meal programs to improve health and academic outcomes for students.

Learn more by accessing the School's Out...Who Ate? report PDF

Report Materials

Report PDF

Summer Hunger Fact Sheet PDF

County Data Table PDF

Press Releases

Helpful Links

Find a summer meal site link

Learn more about summer meal programs in California:

  • California Department of Education link
  • California Summer Meal Coalition link
  • Lunch at the Library link
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