The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Food Nutrition Service (FNS) has awarded Manhattan Strategy Group an 18-month contract to identify innovative approaches to measure erroneous payments in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) at the state-level.School meal programs, including NSLP and SBP, are intended to reduce child hunger and its harmful effects on child learning. Child hunger is a significant concern in the U.S. and a large number of children go to school hungry every day. In 2013, USDA estimated 19.5 percent of American households with children were food-insecure. Multiple studies have shown that student access to nutritious meals is associated with improved classroom behavior and student performance and attentiveness.
Accordingly, USDA seeks to ensure school meal program resources are effectively spent.MSG will work with an expert panel to creatively develop new approaches to measure erroneous payment at the state-level. The state-level estimates will help FNS identify how to best allocate follow-on technical assistance and monitoring to ensure NSLP and SBP resources are disbursed effectively to intended beneficiaries.
MSG is committed to helping government agencies improve critical programs such as the NSLP and SBP. “MSG strongly believes in the mission of the Food Nutrition Service and we are excited to support their efforts to improve program efficiency,” noted Dan Geller, MSG’s Director of Research and Evaluation. Geller added, “The opportunity to work with the Federal government to address persistent issues related to child hunger is incredibly rewarding.”