More than one out of every three students live in poverty or are dangerously close, but signs indicate that the situation could start to improve.
About 37 percent of the 25,466 students attending Johnson County’s public schools qualified for the federal free and reduced-price lunch program this year, which is about what the rate has been since 2011. School districts’ individual rates also are relatively unchanged.
Families qualify for the lunch program based on their income, which cannot exceed 185 percent of federal poverty guidelines. For a family of four, that means they cannot make more than $43,568 annually.