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Northern Michigan schools to provide food to those impacted by coronavirus pandemic

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Northern Michigan school districts are trying to help families impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, following an order from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Friday to close Michigan's public schools. 

On top of closures, the following districts have sent messages to students and parents regarding food availability and alternatives to in-person instruction.

Traverse City Area Public Schools:

  • Will start offering breakfast and lunch pick-up Wednesday, March 18 at four locations. Updates will be offered on the district website when they become available.

Benzie Central Schools

  • Will start offering food delivery on existing bus routes Tuesday, March 17, which is expected to last two weeks.

Kalkaska Public Schools

  • Offering students food for pick-up at several district buildings through March 26, but asking parents to email Food Service Director Jenny Patton at jpatton@kpschools.com beforehand.

Public Schools of Petoskey

  • Food pickup available Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays through April 3. Full list of locations and times can be found here.

Ludington Area Schools

  • Grab-and-go style breakfast and lunches offered to affected families through April 3 at specific times and locations across district.

Elk Rapids Schools

  • Parents must fill out a questionnaire and email it to schoolmeals@erschools.com to get approved for meal pickup/delivery that runs Monday through Friday starting this week. The questionnaire, food pick up times and locations can be found at the district's website.

Suttons Bay Public Schools

  • Parents in need of food assistance can contact their school's secretary for help. As of Friday the district is working to set-up their meal program.

Frankfort-Elberta Area Schools

  • Starting Tuesday, March 17 the district will provide bag lunches along normal bus routes until April 5. Parents are being asked to fill out a form to sign-up for the meal service.

Kingsley Area Schools

  • Starting Monday, March 16 parents in Kingsley can pick up meals at a few locations and parents can call 231.263.5261 ext. 1101 to arrange meal delivery. Drop off times and locations can be found at the district's website.

Leland Public School District

  • The district will offer free meals to students and parents later this week, and are asking parents to fill out a request form if they plan on taking advantage. They will post updates on their website.

Buckley Community Schools

  • Starting Monday, March 16 the district will offer free meals through Friday, March 27. If parents want a meal for pick-up or delivery, they should fill out a form on the district's website.

Forest Area Community Schools

  • Parents that want to to get free meals from the district should call 231-369-4191 ext. 153 and provide their name, address, phone number and the number of children in their house. The district will start offering meals Wednesday, March 18.

Mancelona Public Schools

  • Starting Monday, March 16 students can pick up meals from the Mancelona Middle School Food Service Entrance through April 3. Adults can also buy meals for $4.

Glen Lake Community Schools

  • Delivering meals to families that qualify for free or reduced cost lunches. The district told parents on Facebook that anybody can request a meal by calling 231-334-3061 ext. 503.

IPR will update this story as more information becomes available.

Max came to IPR in 2017 as an environmental intern. In 2018, he returned to the station as a reporter and quickly took on leadership roles as Interim News Director and eventually Assignment Editor. Before joining IPR, Max worked as a news director and reporter at Michigan State University's student radio station WDBM. In 2018, he reported on a Title IX dispute with MSU in his story "Prompt, Thorough and Impartial." His work has also been heard on Michigan Radio, WDBM and WKAR in East Lansing and NPR.