By Natalie Neumann
As unemployment rises, schools in the Washington area are feeding more students.
In Fairfax County one in four students qualifies for free or reduced-price meals this fall, up from one in five three years ago.
In Montgomery County, 29 percent of students were deemed eligible for meal subsidies in October, up from 26 percent in October 2007. In Prince William County, the eligibility rate increased from 29 to 33 percent, and in Prince George's County, from 46 to 52 percent.
Although poverty rates increased only slightly in Loudoun County in the past year, Guilford Elementary School Principal David Stewart tells the Washington Post the rate at his school rose sharply. Stewart says the school and community is responding with donated coats, shoes and backpacks for students.