From staff reports

As the new school year begins on Aug. 13, students in Atlanta public schools will also encounter new meal prices for breakfast and lunch.

According to APS, the Department of School Nutrition is committed to providing all students, regardless of income level, healthy school meals that meet their nutritional needs and support optimal academic performance.

However, in order to maintain the expected level of services, APS will increase its meal prices for both breakfast and lunch, beginning with the 2007 Fall school year. The price increase is based on inflated food costs that have occurred because of escalating gas prices.

The new prices are as follows:

Elementary Breakfast Full Price: $0.75

Elementary Breakfast Reduced Price: $0.30

Elementary Lunch Full Price: $1.75

Elementary Lunch Reduced Price: $0.40

Secondary Breakfast Full Price: $0.75

Secondary Breakfast Reduced Price:$0.30

Ala carte prices will now be $1.25 for a student’s second entree serving, $1.50 for an adult’s second entree serving, $1 for a side item and $0.50 for milk and juice.

The School Nutrition Department offers two meal payment methods.

First, parents can log on to www.mealpay.com and register their child. Parents will need to know their child’s student identification number, which can be obtained from the main office at their child’s school.

The second option is to send cash or a money order to the cafeteria manager at their child’s school.

Some families may be eligible for free or reduced priced meals. Parents wishing to apply for the program should see the principal at their child’s school or contact the Atlanta Public Schools Nutrition Office at 404-802-2540.

Local schools affected by this change include E. Rivers, Garden Hills, Morris Brandon and Sarah Smith Elementary Schools, Sutton Middle School and North Atlanta High School,