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Child Nutrition Programs

Child Nutrition COVID-19 Waivers

School Year 21-22 Flexibilities [Please find previous school year COVID-19 waivers here]

Seamless Summer Option Waiver: FNS is allowing Seamless Summer Option operations through June 30, 2022. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Summer Food Service Reimbursement Rates Waiver:  FNS is allowing school food authorities to claims NSLP SSO meals and snacks at the SFSP reimbursement rates. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Non-Congregate Meal Service Waiver: FNS is allowing meals to be served in non-group settings to support social distancing. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Meal Times Requirements Waiver:  FNS is letting meals be served to kids outside traditional times to maximize flexibility for meal pick-up. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Parent/Guardian Meal Pick Up Waiver: FNS is allowing parents/guardians to pick-up meals and bring them home to their children. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Meal Pattern Flexibility Waiver: FNS is giving states the flexibility to serve meals that do not meet specified meal pattern requirements when needed. [Expires June 30, 2022]

CACFP Specific Meal Pattern Flexibility Waiver: FNS is giving states the flexibility to serve meals that do not meet specified meal pattern requirements when needed. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Offer Versus Serve Flexibility for Senior High Schools Waiver: FNS has established a nationwide waiver to support access to nutritious meals while minimizing potential exposure to the novel coronavirus for school year 2021-22. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Area Eligibility in the Afterschool Programs and for Family Day Care Home Providers Waiver: FNS is allowing schools and at-risk afterschool care centers, regardless of their location, to claim all National School Lunch Program Afterschool Snack Service and Child and Adult Care Food Program At-risk Afterschool Program meals and snacks at the free rate. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Onsite Monitoring Requirements in the School Meal Programs Waiver - Revised - EXTENSION 3: FNS has provided flexibilities for certain monitoring and review requirements for schools meal programs. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Onsite Monitoring Requirements for State Agencies in the Child and Adult Care Food Program Waiver- EXTENSION 3: FNS has provided flexibilities for certain monitoring and review requirements for State agencies administering the CACFP. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Onsite Monitoring Requirements for Sponsors in the Child and Adult Care Food Program Waiver- EXTENSION: FNS has provided flexibilities for certain monitoring and review requirements for sponsors participating in CACFP. [Expires June 30, 2022]

Flexibility for School Meal Programs Administrative Reviews of SFAs Operating Only the SSO in SY 2021-22 Waiver: FNS has provided flexibilities for administrative review requirements for SFAs only operating the Seamless Summer Option in SY 21-22. Offered to all states 5/21/2021

Nationwide Waiver of Local School Wellness Policy Triennial Assessments in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs: Offered to all states 6/11/2021

Area Eligibility Waivers: FNS is working with states to increase the availability of meal sites. [Extended through August 2020] [Extended through September 2020] [Extended through December 2020] [Extended through June 2021] [Extended Through September 2021] [Expires Sept. 30, 2021]

Area Eligibility for Closed Enrolled Sites: FNS is allowing closed enrolled SFSP or SSO sites to use area eligibility without collecting income eligibility applications [Extended through December 2020 ] [Extended through June 2021] [Extended through September 2021] [Expires Sept. 30, 2021]

Child Nutrition Monitoring: FNS has provided flexibilities for certain monitoring and review requirements for child nutrition programs. [Extension] [Extension 2] [Extension 3] [Expires Sept. 30, 2021][Extended until 30 days after the end of the public health emergency]

Community Eligibility Provision Data Waiver: FNS is extending Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) election, notification, and reporting and deadlines for school year 2020-21. [Expires Sept. 30, 2021]

Food Service Management Company Contract Duration Requirements: FNS is waiving food service management company contracts duration requirements for all state agencies, school food authorities, and Summer Food Service Program sponsors. [Extended through June 2021] [Expires June 30, 2022]

Meal Pattern Waiver: FNS is giving states the flexibility to serve meals that do not meet meal pattern requirements when needed. [Extension] [Extension 2] [Extension 3] [Extension 4] [Extension 5] [Extension 6] [Extension 7] [Extension 8] [Extension 9] [Expires Sept. 30, 2021]

Nationwide Waiver for Selected Child Nutrition Program Reporting Requirements: Offered to all states 1/07/2021

Nationwide Waiver to Provide Flexibility for School Meal Programs Administrative Reviews of SFAs Operating Only the SSO in SY 2021-22: Offered to all states 5/21/2021

Nationwide Waiver of Local School Wellness Policy Triennial Assessments in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs: Offered to all states 6/11/2021

Offer Versus Serve in the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP): FNS has established a nationwide waiver to support access to nutritious meals in the SFSP [Extension] [Extension 2] [Extension 3] [Expires Sept. 30, 2021]

Pre-approval Flexibility: FNS is allowing reimbursements for meals served prior to notification of approval and provide flexibility for pre-approval visits. [Extended through June 2021]

Reporting Requirements: FNS is canceling selected administrative data reporting requirements for SY 2020-21.

SFSP Experienced Sponsors Waiver: FNS is allowing state agencies to use a streamlined application process for sponsors that did not operate the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 due to COVID-19 but, operated in FY 2019.

Child Nutrition COVID-19 Waivers from Previous School Years

 
Additional Flexibilities

Supply Chain Assistance Funds to Alleviate Supply Chain Disruptions in the School Meal Programs: FNS is offering additional funds to states to enhance local school districts’ ability to address supply chain challenges.

Emergency Operating Costs During COVID-19 Implementation Guidance | Approved Plans: FNS is offering additional funds to states administering NSLP, SBP and CACFP to provide local operators with additional reimbursements for emergency operating costs due to the public health emergency.

Emergency Shelters Reimbursement During COVID-19 Implementation Guidance: FNS is allowing emergency shelters to claim reimbursement for meals and snacks served to individuals under the age of 25 as of March 11, 2021, until the date the COVID–19 public health emergency is lifted.

Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Alternate Sites Waiver: FNS is allowing approved school food authorities to offer FFVP foods from elementary schools closed due to COVID-19 at SSO and SFSP sites operating during school closures.

Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Parent Pick Up Waiver: FNS is allowing parents/guardians to pick-up FFVP foods and bring them home to their children.

Minimum Administrative Review Flexibilities: FNS is waiving certain requirements for administrative reviews in cases where an insufficient number of the School Food Authorities’ schools are operating.

Oversight Plan Waiver: FNS understands that these are challenging times for all and that many state agencies and program operators face significant resource and time constraints. We are committed to approving waivers that support state agencies and program operators as they strive to run successful programs and meet child nutrition program requirements in order to provide nutritious food to eligible participants.

Provision 2 Base Year: FNS is granting requests for waivers for schools that were conducting a Provision 2 base year in SY 2019-2020 to develop their claiming percentage using data collected when school was in full operation.

SFSP SFA Sponsor Review Waiver: FNS is waiving the review requirement for experienced School Food Authorities that operated the Summer Food Service Program as a new sponsor during an unanticipated school closure.

SMP Non-Congregate Waiver SY 2020-21: FNS is allowing state-approved Special Milk Program operators in good standing to be reimbursed for milk served in non-congregate settings.

SFSP Application Notification Waiver: FNS is extending through December 31, 2020 the notification for application approval or disapproval.

SFSP Monitoring Waiver : Waiving the requirement that the state agency annually review a number of sponsors whose program reimbursements, in the aggregate, account for at least one-half of the total program reimbursements in the state in the previous year.

SMP Parent Pickup SY 2020-21: FNS is allowing state-approved Special Milk Program operators to waive the requirement that milk may only be provided to students during non-congregate meal services.

 
Other Resources

Pandemic EBT: FNS is allowing states to provide benefits (similar to SNAP or “food stamps”) to children who normally receive free or reduced-price school meals. {P-EBT Benefit Increase - January 2021}

Questions & Answers: Information on child nutrition program flexibilities in response to COVID-19, including authorities as provided through FFCRA.

Fact Sheets: A compilation of off-site monitoring information for the FNS child nutrition programs.

Team Nutrition Covid-19 Resources: These publications provide considerations, tips, best practices, and sample menus for child nutrition operators who wish to distribute multiple meals at one time.

12/17/2021