Supporting the Feeding America food banks and their affiliates serving Iowa in their work to ensure that sufficient food is accessible to all.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Impacts of Hunger on Education

  • Food insecurity impairs academic development of young school-age children. The reading and mathematical skills of food insecure children entering kindergarten develop significantly more slowly than other children. (Feeding America website - Frongillo, Jyoti, & Jones, 2005)
  • Hungry children do more poorly in school and have lower academic achievement than food secure children because they are not well prepared for school and cannot concentrate. (Feeding America/Children’s HealthWatch Report)
  • By third grade, children who had been food insecure in kindergarten saw a 13% drop in their reading & math test scores compared to food-secure peers (Food Research and Action Center)
  • Hungry children are more likely to suffer from hyperactivity, absenteeism, generally poor behavioral, and poor academic functioning than non-hungry peers (Food Research & Action Center)
  • Children classified as hungry are twice as likely as their non-hungry peers to be receiving special education services and to have repeated a grade (Food Research & Action Center)
    • A food insecure child who needs special education services costs nearly double that of a child who does not.
    • A child who has to repeat a grade can cost nearly four times as much as a student who neither needs special education nor repeats a grade.
  • Food insecurity in children leads to increased school absences, tardiness, and school suspension (Center on Hunger and Poverty, 2002)
  • When they are in school, children who are food insecure, may experience increases in an array of behavior problems, including fighting, hyperactivity, aggression, anxiety, mood swings, and bullying. (Feeding America website - Slack & Yoo, 2005; Whitaker, Phillips, & Orzol, 2006; Slopen, Fitzmaurice, Williams, & Gilman, 2010; Huang, 2010)
  • Food insecurity in early childhood can limit a child’s cognitive and socio-emotional development, impairing school achievement and therefore long-term productivity and economic potential (Food Research and Action Center)