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Parents want to pay

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014 10:46 a.m. CDT

DES MOINES (AP) — The Des Moines school district says some parents want to pay for their children’s free meals at school. District food director Sandy Huisman said the parents made the offer after the district announced last month that all students at 35 of the district’s 60 schools would be offered free breakfasts and lunches.

Most of the 18,000 students at the 35 schools qualify for free or reduced-price meals. The district determined it was cheaper to provide free meals for all than keep track of students’ eligibility. The USDA agreed to the change and will pay the entire cost of the meals.