FREE & REDUCED-PRICE MEALS
** Families must reapply each year. **
- Benefits begin after the application is processed and are not retroactive.
- SNS will notify you in writing whether your application is approved or denied.
- Districts qualify for education funds based on the number of students eligible for free or reduced price meals each year.
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Frequently Asked Questions:
1. Do I have to fill out the Application for Educational Benefits?
No. You should only complete the application if you want to apply for free or reduced price meals for your children (or to assist the school to qualify for additional educational funds and discounts).
2. Who qualifies for free or reduced-price meals?
Children in households participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP), or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR), and foster children are eligible for free school meals without reporting household income. Children may qualify for free or reduced-price meals if their household income meets federal guidelines.
3. Do foster children qualify for free meals?
Yes, foster children who are the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals regardless of household income.
4. I get WIC. Can my children get free meals?
Possibly, households participating in WIC should complete an application.
5. May I apply if someone in my household is not a U.S. citizen?
Yes. You or your children do not have to be U.S. citizens for your children to qualify.
6. Who should I include as members of my household?
Include yourself and all other people living in the household, related or not (such as grandparents, other relatives or friends). Include a household member who is temporarily away, such as a college student.
7. Do I report my income before deductions (gross income)?
Yes. Farm or other self-employment income should be reported as net income after business expenses. However, a business loss must be treated as zero income and cannot be subtracted from other income.
8. What if my income is not always the same?
List your typical income, including typical overtime.
9. How will the information I provide be kept?
Information you provide and your child's approval for meal benefits will be protected as private data.
10. Will the information I give be checked?
Yes. SNS may ask for income verification.