School meals play an important role in overall student health and academic achievement by fighting hunger and, therefore, contributing to student success in and out of the classroom. Research indicates that school meal programs even promote greater full-day attendance in school as parents will ensure their child is on time and in school for the entire day. However, students are not receiving the balanced, nutritious meals they need to get through the school day and perform their best in the classroom. Poor nutrition from school lunches can lead to negative physical and mental effects for students and hurt their academic performance. In fact, recent changes to school lunches have been centered around concern over the number of children who are overweight as nearly one in five children in the U.S. are obese.
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