Calif. districts misspent meal money, says state report

The DOE has ordered eight districts to repay about $170 million to programs that offer free and reduced-price meals.

Feb. 8—California school districts have misspent tens of millions of dollars intended to provide subsidized meals to low-income students, according to a state Senate report released Wednesday.

The California Department of Education recently ordered eight districts to repay about $170 million to programs that offer free and reduced-price lunches and breakfasts, according to the investigation by the Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes.

In most cases, the cash-strapped districts used the misappropriated funds to pay for other expenses, such as salaries and equipment, according to the report, titled "Food Fight: Small team of state examiners no match for schools that divert student meal funds."

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Industry News & Opinion

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Under the new policy, students with lunch debt will be given the same meals as their peers, regardless of how much they owe. School officials will also be communicating directly with parents of students who have accumulated debt instead of through the students themselves.

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Menu Development
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Ideas and Innovation
sparkling water

Our carbonated soft drink sales at Earls.67 reflect a national trend; we’re continually down on carbonated soft drink sales by 8% to 9% on an annual basis,” says Cameron Bogue, beverage director at the contemporary-casual chain Earls Kitchen + Bar.

The issue with spa water

Many operators are intrigued with the offering, but they are learning that infused water can’t be offered at a cost to guests unless there is added value beyond cut-up fruit. Bogue says, “I was adamant that I didn’t want to charge for spa water.”

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At the original location of

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