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Monongah Elementary School cafeteria manager Virgie Harris shows a freshly rinsed salad being prepared for lunch. School lunch menus have been changed over the years to be more healthy, but school cooks still prepare much of the food “from scratch.”

More than half of all school children in West Virginia qualify for free or reduced lunch.

In Marion County, it comes to almost 50 percent, according to the West Virginia KIDS COUNT Fund, which translates into thousands of school lunches served each day.

Over the years, federal requirements for school lunches have tightened on nutrition and serving sizes, sometimes leading to complaints from students and parents.

School officials say that while things may have changed, the school lunch program is still dedicated to providing healthy, filling meals to students on a daily basis.

“The students have adjusted very well,” said Terri Atha, supervisor of child nutrition in Marion County.


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