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CACFP SY 2022-23 Comparison Table

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The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is offering this comparison table to assist state agencies and program operators as they transition from operations under COVID-19 nationwide waivers to operations designed around their own unique circumstances. For SY 2022-23 Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) operations, state agencies have the choice to return to normal, pre-COVID operations or to seek flexibilities through submission of individual state waivers authorized by Section 12(l) of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act. Please note that FNS expects that program operators will only use certain waivers when congregate meal service is limited by the COVID-19 pandemic. Specific information for each waiver is provided in the table.

 

Topic What You Could do Using COVID Nationwide Waivers (including waiver #) Options Available for SY 2022-23 Operations
Certification
Area Eligibility for At-Risk Afterschool Care Centers Nationwide Waiver of Area Eligibility in the Afterschool Programs and for Family Day Care Home Providers in SY 2021-22 (#93) allowed at-risk afterschool centers, regardless of location, to participate in CACFP. At-risk afterschool centers may participate in CACFP if they are located in areas where at least 50% of the children are eligible for free and reduced-price meals, based on school data.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver 1 to apply alternate methods to establish area eligibility. 2

Meal Service
Meal Service Times Nationwide Waiver of Meal Times Requirements for SY 2021-22 (#88) allowed meals to be served to children outside of traditional times to maximize flexibility for meal pick-up. This waiver allowed state agencies to approve more than one meal to be served at a time; allowed CACFP institutions to distribute meals for multiple days at one time, generally up to one week; and required CACFP institutions to establish meal distribution or delivery times. State agencies may require any institution or facility to allow a specific amount of time to elapse between meal services or require that meal services not exceed a specified duration.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver of meal times requirements. 3

Non-Congregate Meals Nationwide Waiver to Allow Non-Congregate Meal Service for SY 2021-22 (#87) allowed meals to be served in a non-group setting so that children and adult participants could eat meals offsite. Children and adult participants must be served and eat each meal on site in a supervised setting. States may request an individual waiver of congregate meal service requirements for SY 2022-23.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver of congregate meal service requirements. 4

Parent or Guardian Pick-Up Nationwide Waiver to Allow Parents and Guardians to Pick Up Meals for Children for SY 2021-22 (#89) allowed CACFP institutions to distribute meals to parents or guardians to take home. Meals must be served directly to eligible children and adult participants. States may request an individual waiver to allow parents or guardians to pick up meals during SY 2022-23.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver to allow parents or guardians to pick up meals on behalf of eligible children or adult participants. 5

Meal Pattern Flexibility Nationwide Waiver to Allow Specific Meal Pattern Flexibility in the CACFP for SY 2021-22 (#91) allowed state agencies to waive whole grain-rich requirements, crediting grains by ounce equivalents, and unflavored low-fat milk requirements. Institutions and facilities must follow all the updated CACFP meal pattern requirements.
Claiming & Reimbursements
Area Eligibility for Family Day Care Homes Nationwide Waiver of Area Eligibility in the Afterschool Programs and for Family Day Care Home Providers in SY 2021-22 (#93) allowed all day care homes to receive tier I reimbursement for meals and snacks. Tier II day care homes will be reimbursed at the rates established for normal program operations. The provider may receive higher rates of reimbursement for meals served to children who are eligible for free and reduced-price meals.

Households may be requested to fill out meal benefit forms to determine if their children are eligible for free and reduced-price meals.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver to apply alternate methods to establish area eligibility. 6

Monitoring & Reporting
CACFP State Agency Onsite Monitoring Requirements Nationwide Waiver of Onsite Monitoring Requirements for State Agencies in the Child and Adult Care Food Program – Extension 3 (#95) provided flexibilities for certain monitoring and review requirements for state agencies. Required monitoring visits must be conducted onsite.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver of state agency onsite monitoring requirements.

CACFP Sponsoring Organizations Onsite Monitoring Requirements Nationwide Waiver of Onsite Monitoring Requirements for Sponsors in the Child and Adult Care Food Program – Extension (#96) provided flexibilities for certain monitoring and review requirements for sponsors participating in CACFP. Required monitoring visits must be conducted onsite.

States may request an individual 12(l) waiver of sponsoring organization onsite monitoring requirements.

 


1 An individual 12(l) waiver is an approved waiver request submitted by an individual state agency through the process outlined in Section 12(l) of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act, and FNS’ policy guidance, Child Nutrition Program Waiver Request Guidance and Protocol – Revised, memo code SP15 CACFP12 SFSP05-2018. An Individual, 12(l) waiver may be approved for a state agency or an eligible service provider.
2 FNS expects that flexibilities provided under the area eligibility Section 12(l) waiver will only be implemented by program operators when congregate meal service is limited by the COVID-19 pandemic. Local program operators, in collaboration with the state agency, are best positioned to determine to what extent these waivers are needed.
3 FNS expects that flexibilities provided under the meal times requirements Section 12(l) waiver will only be implemented by program operators when meal service times is limited by the COVID-19 pandemic. Local program operators, in collaboration with the state agency, are best positioned to determine to what extent these waivers are needed.
4 FNS expects that flexibilities provided under the congregate meal service Section 12(l) waiver will only be implemented by program operators when congregate meal service is limited by the COVID-19 pandemic. Local program operators, in collaboration with the state agency, are best positioned to determine to what extent these waivers are needed.
5 FNS expects that flexibilities provided under the parent or guardian pick up Section 12(l) waiver will only be implemented by program operators when congregate meal service is limited by the COVID-19 pandemic. Local program operators, in collaboration with the state agency, are best positioned to determine to what extent these waivers are needed.
6 FNS expects that flexibilities provided under the area eligibility Section 12(l) waiver will only be implemented by program operators when congregate meal service is limited by the COVID-19 pandemic. Local program operators, in collaboration with the state agency, are best positioned to determine to what extent these waivers are needed.

05/12/2022