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Seamless Summer Option

Schools participating in the National School Lunch (NSLP) or School Breakfast Program (SBP) are eligible to apply for the Seamless Summer Option (SSO). Although the traditional Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is still available to schools, the SSO offers a streamlined approach (less paperwork) to feeding hungry children in your community.

Contact your NSLP state agency for more information on how to apply for the Seamless Summer Option.

How it Works

  • Once approved through their state agency, school food authorities (SFAs) serve meals free of charge to children, 18 years and under, from low-income areas.
  • The same NSLP and SBP rules apply for meal service. Meals served are reimbursed at the NSLP and/or SBP “free” rates which are slightly lower than the SFSP rates. 
  • For clarification on how SSO differs, we've created a comparison chart.

Types of Sites Allowed to Participate

  • Open sites: all children eat free in communities where at least 50% of the children are eligible for free/reduced price school meals.
  • Restricted open sites: sites that meet the open site criteria, explained above, but are later restricted for safety, control, or security reasons.
  • Closed enrolled sites: may be in any community for an enrolled group of low-income children and meets the 50% criteria explained above. This excludes academic summer schools.
  • Migrant sites: serving children of migrant families.
  • Camps: residential or non-residential camps.

Additional Resources

Page updated: May 06, 2024