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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Utah ranks third worst in the nation in providing school breakfast to low-income children, a new study concluded.
Just 27.6 percent of Utah students who receiving free or reduced-price school lunch also received school breakfast during the past school year, according to a study by the Food Research and Action Center.
The national average was 42.3 percent.
The states that did worse were New Jersey at 24.4 percent and Wisconsin at 23.8 percent.
"We constantly try to promote school breakfast," Laura Oscarson-Wilde, director of child nutrition programs at the state Office of Education, told the Deseret Morning News. "But there is a real bias with parents and school administrators that breakfast is not a school responsibility."
FRAC said many children, especially those who are poor, do not receive breakfast at home, and that impairs the ability to learn, increases behavioral problems and increases absences due to illness.
(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)