Is Your School Participating in Community Eligibility Provision for School Nutrition?

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The USDA is expanding its successful Community Eligibility Provision from pilot status to national program. That means that any eligible school could serve ALL students free breakfast and lunch. While this provision/flexibility may not be for everyone, it is something that will be helpful to some AASA members, and as such, we are covering it on the blog.

The 2014-15 school year is the first time the option will be available to all eligible schools. The change technically takes place on July 1, 2014 and schools have until August 31, 2014 to notify their state agency of their intent to participate.  

Background: The Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) provides an alternative approach for offering school meals to schools in low income areas. Rather than collecting individual applications for free/reduced price meals, CEP allows schools in communities with higher concentrations of poverty to offer free meals to ALL students, not just those who are eligible. The program launched as a pilot in 10 states and the District (IL, KY, MI, NY, OH, WV, FL, GA, MD, and MA). To be eligible, a school district must have at least 40% of its enrolled students identified as eligible for free/reduced lunch. If that is the case, the school can serve free lunches and breakfasts to ALL students. Household applications for free/reduced price meals are not collected. Additional information is available in the links below. The fourth item is the best overview document.

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