Many participants in the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program’s food stamp program whose benefits were reduced beginning this month are children, according to Erin Ripley, food service director for North Adams Community Schools. Ripley said school officials recognized the challenges many students face each evening and weekends, when food may not be as readily available.
“We have combatted student hunger and have found that for students who are too listless or restless to pay attention to their lessons in school, that lack of attention surprisingly often tracked back to the fact that they were simply too hungry to care,” said Ripley. “In altogether too many classrooms, school lunch was the only predictable food in many children’s lives.”
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