HONOLULU - The Hawaii State Department of Education announced that a record 71 public schools will serve meals to children this summer through its summer food service program, Seamless Summer Option (SSO). 

"This is typically a period of time where our most vulnerable students do not have access to services that they normally would during the school year,” said Dann Carlson, assistant superintendent, Office of School Facilities and Support Services. “Our hope is that more students will enjoy a free meal, simply by stopping by one of our participating schools.”

Starting early this month, all children 18 years and younger will be able to utilize the SSO program at public schools around the state to receive free meals, Monday through Friday -- exceptions are June 11 (King Kamehameha Day) and July 4 (Independence Day). It is recommended that parents and guardians call their child's school directly to find out specific times for meal service.

SSO is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and was created to ensure low-income children continue to receive meals during the summer.