Poway Unified School District announced last week its policy on providing free and reduced-price meals for qualifying children under the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs.
According to the district, household size and income criteria are used to determine eligibility for free and reduced-price benefits. See the attached photo for a chart of income levels for eligible households.
Children who receive CalFresh (also known as Food Stamps or SNAP), California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs), and Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payments (Kin-GAP), or receive benefits from the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) are automatically eligible, regardless of the income of the household in which they reside. Foster children are eligible for free meals regardless of the child’s personal income or the income of the household, the district said in a news release.
Requirements for school officials to determine eligibility for free and reduced-price benefits are as follows: For households receiving CalFresh (also known as Food Stamps or SNAP), CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR benefits – applications need only include the enrolled child(ren)'s name, CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR case number, and the signature of an adult household member. For households who do not list a CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR case number, the application must include the names of all household members, the amount and source of the income received by each household member, and the signature and corresponding Social Security number of an adult household member. If the household member who signs the application does not have a Social Security number, the household member must indicate on the application that a Social Security number is not available.
Households that receive CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR benefits may not have to complete an Application for Free or Reduced-Price Meals. School officials will determine eligibility for free meals based on documentation obtained directly from the CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR office that a child is a member of a household currently receiving CalFresh or FDPIR benefits or an assistance unit receiving CalWORKs or Kin-GAP benefits.
Food and Nutrition officials will notify households of their eligibility, but those who do not want their child(ren) to receive free meals must contact the Food and Nutrition Department. CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin- GAP, and FDPIR households should complete an application if they are not notified of their eligibility by August 11, 2013. Nutritionally balanced meals are served every school day at all District schools.
Meal Prices for 2013-2014 School Year are as follows:
- Breakfast (served at Los Peñasquitos, Midland, Pomerado, Rolling Hills, and Valley Elementary Schools, Meadowbrook Middle School, and Poway, Mt. Carmel, and Westview High Schools): $1.50 for elementary and $1.75 for secondary students.
- Lunch: $2.50 for elementary and $3 for secondary students
- Reduced Price Students: $0.30 breakfast and $0.40 lunch
- Extra Milk: $0.50
Information letters informing parents how to apply for free and reduced-price meals will be distributed to every household with children enrolled in Poway Unified School District. Paper applications are also available at the school office and the Food and Nutrition Department or parents and guardians may also apply online at www.applyforlunch.com. Applications may be submitted at any time during the school year.
The Food and Nutrition Department, located in the Poway Industrial Center, has a copy of the policy, which may be reviewed by any interested party.
—All information provided from a PUSD news release