Meal Prices

DPS Food & Nutrition Services has established clear policies for charging meals when students do not have money to pay, preventing meal charges, and ensuring eligible children are certified for free or reduce- price school meals.

Charging Meals

Because hunger is an impediment to learning, no child shall be denied a school meal because of an inability to pay. Children will be offered a school lunch that meets the U.S, Department of Agriculture nutrition standards for school meals.

Preventing Meal Charges

To ensure that households are aware of negative account balances and the potential to accrue unpaid meal amounts, the school nutrition department will:

  • Send out negative balance letters;
  • Use automated calling system to notify parents of negative balances; and
  • Work with school staff to understand the student and parent’s situation and to work with the family to complete a school meal benefit application and/or to add funds to the school nutrition account.

Collecting Unpaid Unpaid Meal Amounts

Families are required to pay any unpaid meal amounts accrued for lunches served to their children.

All communication regarding unpaid meal amounts will be directed to parents or guardians. Any household with a negative school lunch account balance will be contacted by school staff by email phone, or letter home to provide information on how to apply for free or reduced-price school meals or to add funds to the school nutrition account (

Families who submit a school meal benefit application are responsible to make a full payment for lunch until the application is approved.

Breakfast Pricing Lunch Pricing
Grade K-5 $0.00 $2.45
Non Student K-5 $3.00 $3.00
Grade 6-8 $0.00 $2.60
Non Student 6-8 $3.25 $3.25
Grade 9-12 $0.00 $2.85
Non Student 9-12 $3.50 $3.50
Reduced Meals (All Grades) $0.00 $0.40
Adult Meals $3.00 $4.50

Beginning with the 2019/20 school year the Child Nutrition School Lunch Protection Program has been expanded to cover students through 12 grade. This means that students in grades PK-12 who qualify to receive reduced-price meals will not be charged the $0.40 co-payment for a full lunch.

A La Carte Pricing

Additional items from the daily menu, as well as selected other foods, juice and water beverages that comply with the USDA Healthy Snacks guidelines may be purchased a la carte to compliment school meals or meals brought from home.

All extra purchases require funds to be available (on meal account or in hand) at the time of purchase.

Adult Meals

Student prices are less than adult prices because the school receives federal and state reimbursement money for each meal served that meets regulatory requirements. No reimbursement is available for adult meals. Adults may purchase a meal or individualized items and do not have to follow the same meal pattern as students. Adult portion sizes are the same as students.

Year End Balances

Balances remaining in a student’s account at the end of the school year will carry over to the next school year. If the student moves to a new building, the balance will transfer. We encourage parents to check balances before school starts to ensure that there is enough money in the account to cover your childs meal needs.

What's New?

The 2020-2021 Free & Reduced Meal Application is now availabe for DPS families! Please click below.

Our Partners

Denver Enviromental Health
Life Time Foundation
Colorado Department of Agriculture
Kitchen Community

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