Access to balanced meals with nutrient-rich foods is critical to support the health, development, and academic potential of all students. Maryland participates in several of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Child Nutrition Programs listed below to reduce food and nutrition insecurity, meet the nutrition needs of local communities, and ensure children are ready to learn at school.
The Office of School and Community Nutrition Programs (OSCNP) at the Maryland State Department of Education provides leadership in administering five federal nutrition programs and state nutrition initiatives.
OSCNP collaborates with community partners and stakeholders to maximize access for program participants. State funding ensures that all students from households qualifying for reduced-price meals have access to nutritious school breakfast and lunch at no cost each school day.
Participating public and nonprofit private schools, residential childcare facilities, childcare centers, adult day care centers, family childcare providers, and summer food service sponsors serve meals and snacks that meet the nutrition guidelines and standards established by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and that are aligned with the most recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
All 24 Maryland public school systems and 22 non-profit private schools and residential childcare institutions participate in the NSLP, providing over 900,000 students with access to nutritious lunches and snacks each day.
Provides free fresh fruits and vegetables to children at 196 elementary schools during the school day and encourages healthier school environments by promoting nutrition education. The program goals are to:
Provides milk to children in schools, child care centers and eligible camps that do not participate in other federal child nutrition meal programs. The program reimburses schools and institutions for the milk they serve. Schools with half‐day pre‐kindergarten and kindergarten programs where children do not have access to the school meal programs may also participate.
All 24 Maryland public schools and 17 non-profit private schools and residential childcare institutions participate in the SBP, providing over 898,000 students with access to nutritious breakfasts each day.
Provides State funds ensuring that all children in participating schools have access to a nutritious breakfast at the start of each school day. Meals are consumed in the classroom and participating schools must meet the economically disadvantaged criteria to qualify. Currently, 581 schools participate in MMFA.
Provides continued access to nutritious meals during the summer when school is not in session. The program serves children 18 and under in economically disadvantaged areas throughout the state.
Provides reimbursements for nutritious meals and snacks to eligible children, including infants, enrolled at participating childcare centers, daycare homes, afterschool care programs, and children in emergency shelters. The program also serves adults over 60 or living with a disability and enrolled in daycare facilities. Over 300 agencies across the state participate in the CAFCP.
Supports domestic nutrition programs and American agricultural producers through purchases of 100% American-grown and -produced foods for use by schools participating in the NSLP.
Contact:Office of School and Community Nutrition ProgramsPhone: (410) 767-0199TTY/TTD: (410) 333-6642Fax: (410) 333-2635Email: