Resource | Comment Request
Comment Request - Determining Eligibility for Free and Reduced Price Meals and Free Milk

This collection is a revision of a currently approved collection for determining eligibility for free and reduced price meals and free milk as stated in FNS regulations. These federal requirements affect eligibility under the National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, and the Special Milk Program and are also applicable to the Child and Adult Care Food Program and the Summer Food Service Program when individual eligibility must be established

Resource | Notices
Child Nutrition Programs: Income Eligibility Guidelines (July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020)

This notice announces the Department's annual adjustments to the Income Eligibility Guidelines to be used in determining eligibility for free and reduced price meals and free milk for the period from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2020.

Resource | Toolkits
Verification Toolkit

School Food Authorities (SFAs) participating in the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program are required to verify income for a small percentage of households approved for free or reduced price meals each school year. However, getting households to respond to verification requests can be challenging for SFA staff. If households do not respond, they lose their benefits regardless of their actual eligibility. In addition, the number of approved applications an SFA is required to verify is impacted by the number of responses they were able to obtain the previous year.

Resource | Webinars/Videos
Webinar: Verification Toolkit and Beginning Verification Before October 1

A brief overview of the resources contained in the Verification Toolkit, as well as a detailed walk-through outlining a few options for beginning verification before October 1.

Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2017-0044
Eligibility Manual for School Meals

The manual provides comprehensive information on federal requirements, policies, and procedures, and is intended to help state agencies and local educational agencies accurately determine, certify, and verify children’s eligibility for free and reduced price school meals and free milk.

SP36 CACFP15 SFSP11-2017
Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2017-0009
Community Eligibility Provision: Annual Notification and Publication Requirements

This memorandum details guidance on the annual Community Eligibility Provision notification and publication requirements and provides information on the USDA-developed reporting template.

SP20- 2017
Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2016-0095
Area Eligibility in Child Nutrition Programs

The purpose of this memorandum is to revise guidance on the use of school and census data to establish area eligibility in the Child and Adult Care Food Program, the At-Risk Afterschool component of CACFP, the Summer Food Service Program, and the Seamless Summer Option of the National School Lunch Program.

SP08 CACFP04 SFSP03-2017
Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2016-0051
Ensuring Year-long Eligibility in the School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs

The purpose of this memorandum is to strongly encourage local educational agencies (LEAs) to accept eligibility determinations from a transferring student’s former LEA to minimize disruptions in meal benefits for low-income students and avoid student debt resulting from unpaid meal charges. While most students will change schools at least once between kindergarten and 12th grade, data from the Department of Education show that low-income students change schools more often than their peers. School changes can be disruptive to learning, but ensuring that students do not have a break in their access to free and reduced price meals can help ensure students and families make a successful transition.

SP51-2016
Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2014-0051
Eligibility Effective Date for Directly Certified Students

This memorandum addresses inquiries regarding flexibility in determining the effective date of eligibility for students who are directly certified to receive free meals or free milk in the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, and the Special Milk Program.

SP51-2014
Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2014-0022
Determining Eligibility for Two Cent Differential Reimbursement in New Schools

Section 4 of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (NSLA) provides general cash for food assistance payments to states to assist schools in purchasing food. The NSLA provides two different section 4 payment levels for lunches served under the National School Lunch Program.

SP30-2014