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Department of Education Information on the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program

EO Guidance Document #
FNS Document #
SP 12-2021
Resource type
Policy Memos
Guidance Documents
Resource Materials
PDF Icon Policy Memo (167.09 KB)
DATE: May 19, 2021
MEMO CODE: SP 12-2021
SUBJECT: Department of Education Information on the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program
TO: Regional Directors
Special Nutrition Programs
All Regions
State Directors
Child Nutrition Programs
All States

On May 12, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education released information for school districts regarding the Federal Communication Commission’s Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB). The EBB is a new, temporary federal program to help eligible families pay for internet service during the pandemic. Households with a child who was approved to receive free or reduced price meals under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) or the School Breakfast Program (SBP) during the 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 school year, including children who attend schools participating in the Community Eligibility Provision, are eligible for the EBB Program. The Department of Education’s EBB website has further information at the following link:

An introductory letter and “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQ) document will assist schools in learning about the program and includes strategies for reaching out to their school community about the EBB. The letter and FAQ can be found at the following website link:

In addition, an “Outreach Toolkit” with sample templates can be found at the following website link:

The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) appreciates the exceptional work of state agencies and local program operators to support families during this challenging time. State agencies are reminded to distribute this memorandum to program operators immediately. Program operators should direct any questions concerning this guidance to their state agency. State agencies with questions should contact the appropriate FNS regional office.

Angela M. Kline
Policy & Program Development Division

Page updated: December 17, 2021

The contents of this guidance document do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. This document is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies.