Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Free and Reduced Lunch Policy Announced

The San Diego Unified School District has announced its policy for providing free and reduced-price meals for children served under the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program. The Food Services central office has a copy of the policy, which may be reviewed by any interested party.

The household size and income criteria identified below will be used to determine eligibility for free, reduced-price (currently there is no charge for reduced-price meals in San Diego Unified School District), or full-price meal benefits (meal prices are $1.00 for breakfast, $2.00 for elementary lunch, and $2.50 for secondary lunch). Children from households whose gross income is at or below the levels shown here are eligible for free or reduced-price meals. Households who receive CalFresh (also known as SNAP or Food Stamps), California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs), Kinship Guardianship Assistance Payments (Kin-GAP), or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) benefits are automatically eligible for free meals regardless of the income of the household in which they reside.

Application Forms will be distributed to households with a letter informing them of the availability of free and reduced-price meals for enrolled children. Applications are also available in the school office. To apply for free or reduced-price meal benefits, households must complete an application and return it to the school office or mail it to the central Food Services office for processing. Households may also apply on-line by going to www.sandi.net and selecting the School Meal Info/Application shortcut. Applications may be submitted at any time during the school year. The information households provide on the application will be used to determine meal eligibility and may be verified at any time during the school year by school or program officials.

Requirements for school officials to determine eligibility for free and reduced-price benefits are as follows: For households receiving CalFresh (also known as SNAP or Food Stamps), CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR benefits – applications need to only include the enrolled child(ren)'s name, CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR case number, name of the household member receiving benefits, 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 gross monthly amount and source of the income received by each household member, and the signature and corresponding last four digits of the adult household members Social Security number. If the household member who signs the application does not have a Social Security number, the household member must check the box indicating on the application that they do not have a Social Security number.

Under the provisions of the free and reduced-price meal policy, the determining official(s), as designated by the San Diego Unified School District Food Services Department, shall review applications and determine eligibility. Parents or guardians dissatisfied with the eligibility ruling may discuss the decision with the determining official on an informal basis. Parents may also make a formal request for an appeal hearing of the decision and may do so orally or in writing with the Food Services hearing official. Parents or guardians should contact Food Services for specific information regarding the name of the determining official and/or hearing official for San Diego Unified School District.

If a household member becomes unemployed or if the household size increases, the household should contact Food Services. Such changes may make the children of the household eligible for benefits if the household's income falls at or below the levels as shown below.

Households that receive CalFresh, CalWORKs, Kin-GAP, or FDPIR benefits may not have to complete an Application for Free or Reduced-Price Meals. Food Services 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 Services officials will notify households of their eligibility prior to the start of school.

To find out more about the free and reduced-price meal program, contact Food Services at (858) 627-7328 or on the web at www.sandi.net and select the School Meal Info/Application.
San Diego Unified School District also participates in the National School Lunch/Breakfast Programs Provision 2 program which is a program that reduces application burdens, simplifies meal counting and claiming procedures, and provides meals at no charge to all students attending schools operating under Provision 2. In the 2013-2014 school year, the following schools will begin the base year of Provision 2: Bell MS, Farb MS, e3 Civic High, America’s Finest Charter School, King Chavez Preparatory, Arroyo Paseo, Penn ES. The district has 91 other schools participating in Provision 2 where all students are receiving meals at no charge; for a listing of schools, please go to www.sandi.net/food.

In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Adjunction, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call toll free (866) 632-9992 (voice). Individuals who are hearing impaired or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339, or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

2013-14 Income