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Parents can get ‘pickup permits’ for school lunches
No meals served on Good Friday
pickup permits
A family is handed meals and/or lesson plans, Monday outside Jefferson Elementary School. photo courtesy of Andy Negaard, GBHS journalism instructor

Parents who pick up free meal packages from Great Bend USD 428 can now apply for “pickup permits” so they don’t have to bring their kids with them every time, said Kristy Alvord, director of Food Services.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has relaxed its rules to allow USD 428 to register families for parent pickup.

Any child up to 18 years old can pick up meal packets at any of Great Bend’s five elementary schools or its Central Kitchen. Hours of pickup are 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at the schools or 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Central Kitchen.

USD 428 is serving more than 1,000 meals a day now, Alvord said.

“Once a household is registered and receives a permit, parents will be able to pick up meals at their selected location without their children being present. This will allow for working parents to more easily deliver meals to their kids and alleviate other scenarios that we know have been challenging,” Alvord stated in an email to parents of students.

To register, parents should bring all of their children to their desired pickup locations. Preferably, each permit should be issued from the family’s primary pickup location.

• All children must be present on the first day so that staff can verify the number of children in the household.

• For the permit, the district will need to know the household's last name and the number of children age 18 or under. 

“This should simplify the lunch pickup process,” Alvord said. “You must bring your permit each day when you pick up meals; either display in your window or show it to the food service workers. By using your permit, children are not required to be in the car.”

No food service on Good Friday

No meals will be available on Friday, April 10. Good Friday was already scheduled as a school holiday with the Kansas State Department of Education, so the district can’t serve meals on that day, Alvord explained.