The Warwick public school lunch debacle ended, in part because of a donation by an out-of-state company, estimated to be worth more than a billion dollars.
The Greek-yogurt maker Chobani plans to donate nearly $50,000 to the Warwick public schools to pay off debts owed by families in the district for school lunch.
Warwick captured national headlines after the school district decided students with outstanding debts could not receive regular lunch options, and instead receive a sandwich. Warwick Public Schools said it was owed some $77,000 for lunches and couldn’t take on greater debt.
Though the school committee reversed the decision, Chobani spokesman Peter McGuinness says the issue highlights the larger concern of childhood food insecurity.
“There are many Rhode Islands throughout the country, there are many Warwicks throughout the country,” McGuiness . “So we wanted to help here, but we also wanted to raise awareness of a larger problem.”
Legislation introduced this year at the Rhode Island Statehouse would expand free lunch programs in K-12 public schools to all students, using state and federal funds.