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BEECH GROVE, Ind. (WISH) —  Whether children are going to school in-person or learning at home, they still need to eat. With a lot of kids on free and reduced lunch in Indiana, school districts are doing what they can to make sure all students are being fed.

At Beech Grove City Schools, their biggest obstacle lately has been getting students to actually pick up their food. The district’s students in high school and middle school are on a hybrid schedule and are only at school in-person two days a week. The other three days a week, kids are working from home. However, with around 79% of the district’s students on free and reduced lunch, the Beech Grove City Schools said a lot of kids aren’t actually taking home the food they need for e-learning.

“It weighs pretty heavy in your heart, to know that there are kids out there, that need to be coming and getting the meals and they are not coming to get them,” said Dulcie Holcomb.

Holcomb is the director of Dining Services at Beech Grove City Schools and said the meals are packed with love and she wants every child who needs them, to take them home.

“It’s frustrating because we know what it is like to see them when they come in and they are hungry,” Holcomb said while holding back tears. “We just want them to come and get it. Just come and get the food, it’s here, it’s waiting for you, we are waiting for you. We can’t wait to see you and we need to make sure that they are getting what they need. That’s why we offer as many opportunities to come and pick up the food that we can.”

Students doing all e-learning can pick up their meals for the week at the Beech Grove High School on Wednesdays between 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. or 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Kids going to school on a hybrid schedule can take several days worth of breakfast, lunch and dinner home at the end of their second school day. Parents can find out more about the food schedule here.

Photo Courtesy: Beech Grove City Schools

“All they have to do at the end of the day is come through the cafeteria and we will be ready for them,” said Holcomb.

When students do eat at school, young children will eat in their classrooms and older students will eat in the cafeteria. The district said the cafeterias are now spaced out and decked out with COVID-19 safety reminders, along with extra sanitation and staff will be distributing the food.

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Indiana coronavirus timeline

With information from the Indiana Department of Health through March 4, 2021, this timeline reflects updated tallies of deaths and positive tests prior to that date.