TALLMADGE — As summer days fade, families start planning for the opening day of the school year for their offspring.

This year, students in first through ninth grades bid adieu to summer break and hello to the new school year Aug. 26. The district’s youngest students will be phased in between Aug. 26 and 28, with all kindergartners starting officially Aug. 29. Meanwhile, the oldest students, the sophomores, juniors and seniors, start a day later on Aug. 27.

The Tallmadge district’s sixth- through eighth-grade students are scheduled to walk into a new middle school, constructed near the former middle school. The high school will see new athletic facilities, including a 3,500-seat capacity stadium; an eight-lane track; a 7,500-square-foot field house with locker rooms, public restrooms and concessions; and on-site parking.

The district’s students at Dunbar Primary and Munroe Elementary also are scheduled to go to a new elementary school in the 2019-20 school year; however, that transition is expected to happen in January after winter break.

For students and families wanting to get an advanced look at their school and classrooms, Dunbar Primary will have an open house Aug. 23 from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Munroe Elementary will have its open house Aug. 22 from 4:30 to 6 p.m. The high school will have a freshman parent orientation meeting from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Students at the new middle school will have two Meet The Building dates: Aug. 20 from 6 to 8 p.m. for sixth grade, and Aug. 21 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. for seventh grade, and from 6:30 to 8 p.m. for eighth grade. This replaces the open house events for the middle school, and will give families a chance to tour the building, get schedules, meet teachers, pick up Chromebooks and learn about the school’s clubs and sports.

Students will have Thanksgiving break Nov. 27 through 29. Students at the elementary and middle schools will have parent-teacher conferences Nov. 26 with no classes; the high school will be in session.

Winter break is Dec. 23 through Jan. 3, spring break will be March 23 through 27, and the last day of school for students is June 4.

School meals

The district offers breakfast and lunch each school day. Lunch is $2.75 for kindergarten through fifth-graders, and $3 for sixth- through eighth-graders, and $3.25 for high school students. Breakfast is $1.75 for or kindergarten through fifth-graders, and $2 for sixth- through 12th-graders.

Visit http://www.tallmadgeschools.org for information on the free or reduced meal program, and for menus, or call or email Roy Zeman, director of student service at zeman.roy@tallmadgeschools.org or 330-633-3291, ext. 6003.

Children from families whose annual income is at or below the federal guidelines are eligible for free and reduced-price meals or free milk if the school participates in the Special Milk Program.

Application forms are distributed to all homes. To apply for free and reduced-price benefits, households should complete an application and return it to the school. Additional copies are available at the principal’s office in each school. A complete application is required. Households which currently receive Special Nutrition Assistance Program Benefits or Ohio Works First funds for a child must provide the child’s name, the SNAP or OWF case number and signature of an adult household member on the application. Households that do not receive SNAP or OWF funds must provide the names of all household members, the last four digits of the Social Security Number of the adult signing the application or state "none" if the adult does not have a Social Security Number, the amount and source of income received by each household member, (state the monthly income) and the signature of an adult household member. If any of this information is missing, the school cannot process the application.

Foster children are categorically eligible for free meal benefits regardless of the household’s income. If a family has foster children living with them and wishes to apply for such meals or milk for them, contact the school for more information.

Health care

Families with children eligible for school meals may be eligible for free health care coverage through Medicaid and/or Ohio’s Healthy Start & Healthy Families programs. These programs include coverage for doctor visits, immunizations, physicals, prescriptions, dental, vision, mental health, substance abuse and more. Call 1-800-324-8680 for more information or to request an application. Information can also be found on the web at http://jfs.ohio.gov/ohp/consumers/familychild.stm. Anyone who has an Ohio Medicaid card is already receiving these services.

The information provided on the application is confidential and will be used only for the purpose to determine eligibility and may be verified at any time during the school year by school or other program official. To discourage the possibility of misrepresentation, the application forms contain a statement above the space for signature certifying that all information furnished is true and correct. Applications are being made in connection with the receipt of federal funds. Schools or other officials may check the information on the application at any time during the school year. Deliberate misrepresentation of information may subject the applicant to prosecution under applicable state and federal laws.

Households will be notified of the approval or denial of benefits.

Preschool

The Tallmadge City Schools, with the Summit Education Service Center, have a preschool program at the David Bacon School. Children in the city who are 3 or older are eligible. The program is geared to providing preschoolers with a disability and peer models without special needs an opportunity to interact.

For more information about the preschool program, call Brandy Kresowaty, ESC preschool secretary, at 330-945-5600 ext. 511259.

For more information on the district’s schools, call 330-633-3291 or visit http://www.tallmadgeschools.org online.

Reporter April Helms can be reached at 330-541-9423, ahelms@recordpub.com, or @AprilKHelms_RPC