Do elementary schools in the US provide lunch or do students bring their own lunch?

Q: Do elementary schools in the US provide lunch or do students bring their own lunch?

A: The schools do not provide the lunch. You can BUY a lunch from the cafeteria, or you can bring your own from home. Usually kids have a monthly lunch ticket that is paid for at the beginning of the month by the parents, so that they don’t need to worry about carrying money. Kids all eat in the cafeteria together, regardless of whether they bought or brought their lunches.

This cafeteria system is the same throughout all grades, though some high schools offer “a la carte” items that kids can buy, rather than the “hot lunch” of the day. For example, my high school had windows outside the cafeteria where we could buy a variety of drinks, snacks (freshly made cookies and cinnamon rolls) and other items like gum. My friend went to a high school that offered the a la carte items right in the cafeteria line. So everyone lined up together, and as you went through the line you could add what you wanted to your tray, then pay at the end.

My son’s junior high had the most surprising cafeteria I have seen. In addition to the line for a regular hot lunch, the kids could choose a “soup bar” that offered 3 different kids of soup and toppings each day, a “taco bar” where they could build their own tacos, a “baked potato bar”, or pizza! They had better food than most offices!


Q: アメリカの小学校では昼食は出るの?持っていくの?