Dallas County schools offer grab-and-go meal programs

Staff Report
Grab-and-go meal bags at the Perry High School. Perry’s program started on Monday, March 23. PHOTO BY ANDREW BROWN/DALLAS COUNTY NEWS

While school districts across Dallas County will be closed through April 13 because of COVID-19 concerns, they will still be feeding students.

Districts like ADM, Van Meter and Waukee started offering grab-and-go meal programs on Monday, March 23. Dallas Center-Grimes will follow as its grab-and-go program will start on Wednesday, March 25.

ADM Community School District

The ADM Community School District started daily free sack lunch program on Monday, March 23. The program will be offered to all ADM residents 18 years old or younger on Monday through Friday.

Locations include:

  • Minburn School Building, 9:45-10:30 a.m.
  • Adel Elementary, 11-11:45 a.m.
  • ADM Middle/High School, 11-11:45 a.m.
  • DeSoto Intermediate, 12:30-1:15 p.m.

Families can walk or drive to one of the above serving locations. If driving, parents are encouraged to remain in their vehicles to allow for a safe interaction between ADM staff or volunteers and community members.

In the drive up line, the adult in the vehicle will tell the server how many free sack lunches are needed for children 18 years old or younger.

If transportation is unavailable, children and adults are welcome to walk to an identified location and pick up their free sack lunch in person.

“We ask that children and adults maintain no direct contact with ADM staff or volunteers and practice social distancing while picking up meals,” the ADM district said.

Dallas Center-Grimes Community School District

DC-G will be offering grab-and-go meals to serve the communities of Dallas Center and Grimes The meals will be available between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. starting on Wednesday, March 25. Breakfast and lunch will be included in one bag. The meals will be distributed as a curbside pickup at the north kitchen door at South Prairie Elementary and the east door of Dallas Center Elementary.

The district said meals will be provided to all children, ages 1-18, at no charge. The district added that the meals are available to children regardless of what school they attend or where they live. Each meal will include protein, grain, fruit, vegetable and milk.

Perry Community School District

Perry Elementary and Perry High School are participating in a grab-and-go meal during the school closure. The program began on Monday, March 23. A grab-and-go meal containing breakfast and lunch items will be provided to all children age 18 or under without charge and are the same for all children. Meals will be provided, as a first-come, first-serve basis, at the sites and times as follows:

  • At the elementary school meals can be picked up in back of the school by the PACES entrance/bus drop off site from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Monday - Friday.
  • At the high school meals can be picked up in the front of the school by the main door from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Monday – Friday.

Van Meter Community School District

Van Meter lunch staff started offering free breakfasts and lunches on Monday, March 23. The meals are available for any Van Meter student in grades TK-12.

The grab-and-go meals are available at:

  • Prairie Village from 11 to 11:30 a.m. The van will be located at the main entrance.
  • Crestview Estates from 11:35 a.m. to 12:05 p.m. at the corner of Bulldog and Long Avenues.
  • Bus pick up lane at the East Dining Hall of the Secondary Building from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The district encourages families to email Barb at barb.sandusky@vmbulldogs.com to help with meal planning. Though the district said everyone is still welcome to pick up meals at the above locations. Times and locations may be adjusted as needs change.

Waukee Community School District

The Waukee Community Schools Nutrition Services Department announced it will provide an opportunity for families to pick up lunch and breakfast for children under the age of 18. The program started on Monday, March 23 and will go until further notice.

Meals can be picked up from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Monday through Friday in the parking lots of the following locations:

  • Windfield West Apartments: 75 SE Windfield Pkwy, Waukee, at the basketball court
  • Sun Prairie Apartments: 6137 Vista Drive, West Des Moines, at the playground closest to the corner of Vista Dr and 60th St.

Children must be present in order to receive meals. Grab-and-go pick up will be offered to those families on-site. All others please stay in your car and wait for the meals to be brought to your car. You will receive meals (lunch and next day’s breakfast) based on the number of children in the car ages 1-18.

This program will be solely for pick-up of meals, not to be consumed on-site. Families are encouraged to continue to be proactive in reducing the risk of COVID-19 by not gathering at the site once meals have been distributed, continuing to wash hands often, sneezing or coughing into a tissue or your elbow and staying home if you are sick.

“At this time, we are not in need of volunteers or donations, however, this could change in the future and we will let you know how you can help,” Waukee Community Schools Nutrition Services said.

Woodward-Granger Community School District

Family Assistance Needs Assessment

The Counselors and the Administration of the Woodward-Granger Community School District created a survey for families to request food assistance and other assistance as needed. The survey will help the district determine the amount of food to provide in a food pantry and determine the need for grab-and-go style lunches.

The district said it has organized a little food bank at the elementary school. The food bank was stocked from the Food Bank of Iowa and started on Monday, March 23.

The food bank will be have prepackaged items available from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the front entry of the elementary for families that are in need. Milk and fruit is also available.

“All that we ask is that you take only what you need,” the district said.