Students across Columbus are starting classes again Wednesday.
The start of the school year for Columbus City Schools comes with a big change: free breakfast and lunch for anyone in the district.
In July, school officials announced they received a federal grant that allows them to fund the free meals for all 51,000 students in the district, despite financial means.
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Eighty-percent of students within the district already qualified for free meals, and because Columbus City Schools met the USDA requirements for free meals regardless of family income, they decided to expand it to everyone.
There is no need for students to apply for anything to receive the meals. The only money students may need will be to pay for optional a la carte items and snack foods.
The district is hoping the food will improve overall performance in the classroom.
Columbus City School District is also hoping for a smooth beginning for bus drivers this year.
Last year, the district was off to a slow start due to a bus driver shortage in the district.
In 2013, a verbal contract fell through between the district and contractor to supply temporary bus drivers. This caused some drivers to do double routes, and meant many students found themselves waiting for drivers to arrive.
The district says this year it's a different story. They have everyone in place and all 845 buses passed inspections, including reserve buses.
About 32,000 students ride the bus to Columbus City Schools every year.
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