The cost of lunch at Council Rock schools will increase next year due to new mandates that require certain healthy components be served with each meal.
The Council Rock School Board on Thursday approved increasing the cost of lunch for elementary students from $2.55 to $2.75 for the 2012-2013 school year. Middle school lunches will increase by a quarter, from $3 to $3.25.
The high schools have a la carte menus. Some items will be increasing by a nominal amount.
Council Rock students attend school for 180 days per year. The 2012-2013 school calendar has five half days. That means if an elementary school student purchased a meal each of the 175 days, he or she will end up paying $35 more next year for lunch.
Middle school students will shell out $43.75 more.
Council Rock uses Chartwells Food Service as its lunch provider.
Each year, the school district is required to receive a proposal with regard to the financing of the food service department, said Robert Reinhart, the district’s director of business administration.
“This year, they are requesting an increase in pricing,” Reinhart said, adding the higher costs are attributed to new regulations that mandate a fruit or vegetable be provided with every meal.
Board member Paul Anagnostakos was skeptical of the mandate. “We’re forcing something that’s going to cost us more money,” he said. “I think this is just the tip of the iceberg.”