Fort Mill Schools will join districts across the state in offering free meals for students through the end of the year, even for virtual students.

Beginning this week, all FMSD schools will offer free breakfast and lunch meals to all students.

“All meals will be free to students. ALL students,” said Tammie Welch, Student Nutrition Director for Fort Mill Schools. “Any student who wants to eat, it will be free, until Dec. 31 or until the funds run out.”

The funds come through the U.S. Department of Agriculture with their Food and Nutrition Service extending a suite of nationwide waivers for the Summer Food Service Program and Seamless Summer Option.

“There are a lot of families who did not qualify this year for free or reduced meals, so it is really going to help those families,” Welch said at Tuesday night’s school board meeting.

The new programs allow meals to be served outside of the typically-required group settings and meal times while waiving meal pattern requirements as necessary and permitting parents and guardians to pick-up meals for their children.

In Fort Mill, the Student Nutrition Department is offering a meal pick-up option for students enrolled in the Fort Mill Virtual Academy or for A/B students on their E-Learning Days.

Meal pick up begins at 1:45 p.m. today (Sept. 9) at Nation Ford High School in the bus loop and continues every Wednesday. Pick-up time will be 1:45pm-2:45pm. For more information, click here.

IN OTHER SCHOOL BOARD NEWS FROM TUESDAY’S MEETING:

A Candidate’s Forum for School Board Candidates is scheduled on October 22 at Catawba Ridge High School. The event will be closed to the public and will be live streamed through the district’s YouTube page.

Superintendent Chuck Epps provided an overview of the opening of school for the 2020-2021 academic year. Total enrollment remains fluid as the district makes adjustments to virtual and face-to-face students, as well as enroll new students to the district. The current total is roughly 16,900 students, with 30 percent of students attending school virtually.

Athletic event attendance and ticket sales. Due to the reduced capacity allowed at stadiums and sports facilities, the district will presell tickets for each sporting event. Middle school tickets will be limited to family members only. High school tickets may be purchased in advance by the public. The district will not be able to honor district badge or gold cards until further notice.

COVID-19 definitions, procedures and reporting. The definitions below were shared along with the process for contact tracing and communicating with those impacted. The district will contact anyone that is impacted by a COVID-19 case to inform them of the proper procedure they should follow. These procedures are outlined in the Return to School Guide available on the district website. The district is also developing a data dashboard to share information regarding active cases in conjunction with SCDHEC’s new system for detailing cases by district and school.

Definitions

Quarantine: Used to separate people who are a close contact or a household contact of someone with a contagious disease, such as COVID-19, from others for a period of time (a minimum of 14 calendar days for COVID-19) to see if they develop symptoms or become ill. While in quarantine, they should stay home and avoid contact with other people until the quarantine period is over.

Isolation: The act of remaining at home or a place where a person can avoid contact with other people until the isolation period is over. This includes avoiding contact with those in their household as much as possible.  Isolation is recommended for those who are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 and/or have tested positive.