Did you know that students engaged in after-school activities at T.C. Williams High School can now enjoy dinner at school — for free? It’s true!
On Jan. 9, T.C. launched a new after-school meal program, the Dinner Club, which has been feeding between 200 – 300 students every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Any student involved in afterschool tutoring or in an activity, club or sport held at T.C. can simply come to the cafeteria, sign in and grab a meal beginning at 3:15 p.m.
Response to the program has been tremendous. While the Dinner Club is just a couple of weeks old, our numbers have grown significantly each week. Refueling our students with a variety of healthy food options at the end of a long school day, before they head to after-school activities, sets them up to be better able to engage and learn,” said T.C. Williams Principal Peter Balas.
Students can choose from favorites, such as pizzas, chicken sandwiches, mozzarella-stuffed bread sticks and grab-and-go options, such as salads, deli sandwiches and classic PBJ. Meals include milk, fruit and a vegetable.
The program was made possible thanks to a $30,000 grant from the No Kid Hungry Virginia campaign run by the national anti-hunger organization, Share Our Strength, which was used to help staff the program and purchase equipment. The At-Risk After-school Meals Program is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which provides reimbursement for the meals.
T.C. is the second school to offer an after-school meal program to students. William Ramsay has been offering one since 2014. The goal is to expand the program to other qualifying schools, such Minnie Howard and eventually Francis C. Hammond.
ACPS now also offers Breakfast in the Classroom programs at Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology, Patrick Henry and William Ramsay elementary school and Francis C. Hammond Middle School.