Traverse City Area Public Schools
Bylaws & Policies


Michigan Department of Education (MDE) and National School Lunch Program (NSLP) have provided schools with administrative guidelines and policy for meal charges. Following the administrative guidelines from MDE and NSLP, Traverse City Schools will adhere to the following meal charge policy:

 A.A staff or student may charge up to three (3) meals maximum (one charge per meal).

 B.Schools will offer a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and milk at no cost.

 C.If a student has a charge balance, the school must provide a meal when the student is using money to pay for the current day’s meal or future meals.

 D.It is permissible for schools to serve only one (1) particular set of food items to students whose parents owe the school money, as long as the food items comprise a reimbursable meal.

 E.A staff or student who has charged a meal may not charge or purchase "ala carte" item(s), including extra main entrees or make purchases in the snack room.

 F.If a student repeatedly comes to school with no lunch and no money, food service employees must report this to the building administrator. It could be a sign of abuse or neglect and the proper authorities should be contacted.

 G.Schools may deny a meal to a student who pays reduced or full price and who does not provide the required payment for that meal.

 H.The food service director or other school personnel will coordinate communications with the parent(s)/guardian(s) to resolve the matter of unpaid charges.

 I.If cafeteria services staff suspects that a student may be abusing this policy, written notice will be provided to the parent(s)/guardian(s) that if he/she continues to abuse this policy, the privilege of charging meals will be refused.

 J.All accounts must be settled at the end of a school year. Letters will be sent home approximately four (4) to five (5) days before the last day of school to students who have any negative balances. Negative balances will result in report cards being held until the balance is paid in full. Negative balances not paid in full thirty (30) days prior to the start of the following school year will force the District to take action to collect unpaid funds by means of collection agencies, small claims court, or any other legal method deemed necessary by the District.

 K.The District cannot go on indefinitely feeding students for free. Unlimited "charged" meals would not be fair to the vast majority of students/parents who are paying for their lunches. Unpaid lunches could ultimately affect lunch prices.

Adopted 6/9/14