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The Importance of Free School Lunches for Children's Academic Success

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Human-Written

Words: 625 |

Page: 1|

4 min read

Published: Feb 12, 2024

Words: 625|Page: 1|4 min read

Published: Feb 12, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Free School Lunches
  3. Opposition and Rebuttal
  4. Conclusion
  5. Works Cited

Introduction

Children are delicate, and it is important to provide them with the necessary support they need at school, including access to free lunch. The issue of whether school lunches should be free or not has been a long-standing debate with no clear consensus. Supporters argue that children benefit greatly from free lunch programs, while critics claim that providing free food is not within the scope of a school's responsibilities. This essay will argue that children in schools should be given free lunches due to the negative impact of hunger on learning and the long-term consequences of food insecurity.

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Free School Lunches

Research has shown a strong correlation between free school lunches and improved academic performance. Schwartz and Rothbart found that students who benefited from such programs had better grades [1]. Hungry children struggle to concentrate in the classroom, leading to poor performance in exams. Adequate nutrition is essential for optimal brain function, highlighting the importance of providing free lunches to those in need. Poor nutrition can hinder cognitive development in children, making it difficult for them to focus in class. Therefore, the lack of free lunch in schools contributes to poor performance, lack of concentration, and overall poor health, potentially leading to high dropout rates and limited opportunities for these children later in life.

The majority of children who require free lunches come from food-insecure homes. With increasing economic hardships, more families living near or below the poverty line cannot afford to meet their basic needs. Denying these children free meals puts them in a vulnerable position, as they may not have anything to eat once they get home. These children experience hunger both in and out of school, leading to prolonged lack of essential nutrients and negative health implications. Poverty is a significant factor influencing school dropout rates, and the lack of free meals further compounds this issue [2]. By providing free lunches, schools can help keep these children in school and contribute to building a healthier society in the long term.

Opposition and Rebuttal

Opponents argue that supporting free-lunch programs is expensive and diverts attention from the primary focus of schools, which is teaching. However, these claims are weak and do not justify eliminating such initiatives. The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) compensates schools for the cost of providing free lunch to students [3]. Schools receive reimbursements from the government, indicating that the argument of expense does not hold true. Additionally, providing free lunch to students should be seen as part of a school's responsibility to create a conducive learning environment. It would be futile to teach hungry children without addressing the underlying causes of their struggles. Therefore, schools have a moral obligation to provide free meals to students in need.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, it is crucial for schools to support free-lunch initiatives for the overall well-being and success of students. Many children who benefit from these programs come from food-insecure homes and may not receive healthy meals at home. This lack of nutrition and hunger negatively impacts their concentration and academic performance. Furthermore, these students are more likely to drop out of school, leading to increased crime rates and poverty levels in society. While there may be costs associated with implementing free-lunch programs, schools receive support from the government under the NSLP. Therefore, offering free lunch to students should be considered part of a school's core responsibilities.

Works Cited

  1. Binder, Shawn. “Why Lunches In Schools Need To Be Free.” Guff. Web.
  2. Machell, Kyla, et al. “Buffering the Negative Impact of Poverty on Youth: The Power of Purpose in Life.” Social Indicators Research, vol. 126, no. 2, 2016, pp. 845-861.
  3. Schwartz, Amy, and Michah Rothbart. “Let them Eat Lunch: The Impact of Universal Free Meals on Student Performance.” Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, no. 203, 2017, pp. 1-53.
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This essay was reviewed by
Dr. Charlotte Jacobson

Cite this Essay

The Importance of Free School Lunches for Children’s Academic Success. (2024, February 12). GradesFixer. Retrieved February 29, 2024, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-free-school-lunches-for-childrens-academic-success/
“The Importance of Free School Lunches for Children’s Academic Success.” GradesFixer, 12 Feb. 2024, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-free-school-lunches-for-childrens-academic-success/
The Importance of Free School Lunches for Children’s Academic Success. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-free-school-lunches-for-childrens-academic-success/> [Accessed 29 Feb. 2024].
The Importance of Free School Lunches for Children’s Academic Success [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Feb 12 [cited 2024 Feb 29]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/the-importance-of-free-school-lunches-for-childrens-academic-success/
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