On Wednesday, the El Paso Independent School District officials announced that will continue to provide five days’ worth of meals to any child under the age of 18 during the COVID-19 campus closures, but will shift distribution to three days a week starting on Monday.
Starting on April 20, EPISD will distribute meals on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in order to lessen potential exposure to the novel coronavirus for families and cafeteria workers.
“We are proud of the efforts EPISD has made to make sure all children in El Paso have access to healthy meals during these difficult times,” Superintendent Juan E. Cabrera said. “However, we want to make sure that our employees and our families reduce the risk of being infected by the virus. This move to three days a week will help us continue our service to the community and safeguard the wellbeing of everyone.”
The take-home meals will be distributed curbside using social distancing guidelines on those days from 11a.m. to 1 p.m.
Although meals will be distributed three times a week, children will receive breakfast and lunch for five days. Children will receive two breakfasts and two lunches on Mondays and Wednesdays, and one breakfast and lunch on Friday.
EPISD offers free take-home breakfast and lunch for children ages 1-18, regardless of their enrollment status with the District. New federal guidelines allow parents to pick up meals for students without having their children present at the point of distribution.
Parents can bring their children to a distribution site to be officially counted by EPISD Food and Nutrition staff. Once counted, a parent will be issued a card noting how many children live in that household, and that card can be presented every day from then on to receive meals.
A second option for parents is to bring one of five documents to show proof that a child lives in that household. The parent will then be issued a card noting the number of children in the home, which can be presented every day from then on to receive meals.
Parents need to present one of the following documents to participate in this option:
• An official school enrollment document (letter or email)
• Student report cards
• School attendance records from a school district parent portal
• Birth certificate for children not enrolled in school
• Student ID cards
The cards issued will be site-specific and will be valid only at the school that issued them. Parents are asked to use the meal distribution service only at one location.
EPISD meal distribution sites are: