As a child, New Mexico State Sen. Michael Padilla cleaned tables, worked in the kitchen, and served full meals to other students during school lunch, all to earn a different, less nutritious meal afterward. “I didn’t see it as shaming at the time, but I did feel very different from the other children,” says the Democratic majority whip, who grew up in foster care. Although the US government has long offered the poorest students meal assistance, some families do not apply, and others do not quali…

To read this article and start a full year of unlimited online access, subscribe now!

Already a subscriber?

Need to register for your premium online access,
which is included with your paid subscription?