Florence City Schools implements ‘Feeding the Falcons’ program to help feed students during pandemic

Shoals

FLORENCE, Ala. — Students statewide are finishing the school year at home to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Florence City Schools understands this creates a problem for many students who rely on school breakfast and lunch as their only meals of the day. The school board, along with the child nutrition program, came up with a solution to feed the falcons.

“I think we’re all in the same boat that the COVID-19 pandemic kind of hit us a little bit unexpectedly, but we wanted to commit to making sure our children of Florence City Schools and in our district and area were taken care of nutrition-wise,” said Child Nutrition Program Coordinator Tara Talmage.

The great thing about ‘Feeding the Falcons’ is that children don’t need to be enrolled in Florence City Schools. Any family with children 18 and under can drive up to receive a meal, however, students must present.

“It’s been an overwhelmingly positive response,” said Talmage. “I’m not sure if any of us anticipated how much of an impact it was going to have on us as well as the students that we’ve been taking care of.”

Originally, pick-up was five days a week, but Florence City Schools wanted to make sure that everyone was kept safe.

“This week we decided to make a change in our schedule to do Tuesday/Thursday pick-ups,” said Talmage. “We want everyone to be able to shelter in place to kind of help the social distancing a little bit better by not requiring a five-day a week pick-up.”

The school system is still providing five days worth of meals—it’s just allowing families more time to stay safe indoors.

Drive-thru locations operate from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the following locations:

  • W.C. Handy Preschool
  • Harlan Elementary School
  • Weeden Elementary School
  • Florence Middle School
  • Church of the Highlands Shoals Campus at the Shoals Marriott Conference Center
  • The Shoals Dream Center

Drop zone locations will operate from 11:30 a.m. to noon at the former Boys and Girls Club at Cherry Hill Homes and Hibbett Middle School.

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