Microsoft Cetified Partner

Frequently Asked Questions

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Who can get free meals?
Who can get reduced meals?
Can homeless or runaway students receive free meals?
I receive WIC benefits. Do my children qualify for Free and Reduced priced meals?
If I do not qualify now, may I reapply during the school year?
If I disagree with the school's determination of my benefits, what do I do?
How secure is my online application transaction?
How long after I apply will my children's meal status be determined?
Do I need to fill out an application for each child?
My children were free or reduced last year. Do I need to fill out another application?
Will the information I provide in this process be verified?
Do all of the members of my household have to be U.S. citizens to apply for Free and Reduced meal benefits?
Who should be included when determining my household size or listing the members of my household?
What if my income fluctuates and is not always the same amount?
My family is a military dependent family; do we include our housing allowance as income?
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Benefits

Q: Who can get free meals?
A: Children living in households whose monthly income falls within the federal income guidelines for free meals. An application must be completed to determine eligibility. Children in a household receiving SNAP, TFA or Medicaid benefits may be directly certified to receive free meals. Some students receiving Medicaid benefits may qualify for reduced price meals. If your students are directly certified, you will receive a letter from Food and Nutrition Services. Please be sure ALL of your students are listed on this letter. If all of your children are not listed, please contact 203-630-4166.
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Q: Who can get reduced meals?
A: Children living in households whose monthly income falls within the federal income guidelines for reduced price meals. An application must be completed to determine eligibility.
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Q: Can homeless or runaway students receive free meals?
A: If you believe the child for whom you are applying is homeless or a runaway, you must contact the districts homeless liaison, Elsie Torres-Brown at (203) 630-4192. An application must be completed to determine eligibility.
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Q: I receive WIC benefits. Do my children qualify for Free and Reduced priced meals?
A: Not necessarily. The determination of free and reduced price meal benefits are based on the Federal Income guidelines. An application must be completed to determine eligibility.
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Q: If I do not qualify now, may I reapply during the school year?
A: You can apply for free or reduced price meals at any time during the school year. If you are not eligible now, but experience a change such as a decrease in household income, an increase in household size, become unemployed or begin to receive SNAP or TFA, fill out an application at that time.
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General

Q: If I disagree with the school's determination of my benefits, what do I do?
A: If you do not agree with the decision you may discuss it with Food and Nutrtition Services at (203) 630-4166. You also have the right to a fair hearing. To request a fair hearing, call or write to the following official: Donna Carnot, Director of Business Services Address: 22 Liberty Street Meriden, CT 06450 Phone: (203) 630-4170
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Security

Q: How secure is my online application transaction?
A: The most secure it can be, as determined by a legal opinion.
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Applications

Q: How long after I apply will my children's meal status be determined?
A: As quickly as possible (usually within 2-3 days), you will receive a detailed letter indicating your children's status. The month of August is an exception due to the volume of incoming applications.
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Q: Do I need to fill out an application for each child?
A: No. Complete ONE Family Application for Meal Benefits for all students in your household. Be sure the application is complete - an incomplete application cannot be processed and will delay benefits.
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Q: My children were free or reduced last year. Do I need to fill out another application?
A: Yes. Your family application is only good for one school year and for the first few weeks of the new school year. You must send in a new 2017-2018 application as soon as possible, unless Food and Nutrition Services has notified you in writing that your child is eligible for this school year.
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Q: Will the information I provide in this process be verified?
A: Your eligibility may be checked at anytime during the school year. School officials may ask you to send records proving that your child is eligible to receive free or reduced meal benefits.
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Q: Do all of the members of my household have to be U.S. citizens to apply for Free and Reduced meal benefits?
A: No. United States citizenship or immigration status is not a condition of eligibility for free and reduced priced meal benefits.
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Q: Who should be included when determining my household size or listing the members of my household?
A: Include all individuals living in the household, related or unrelated, also include everyone's GROSS income.
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Q: What if my income fluctuates and is not always the same amount?
A: If your income fluctuates, list the income you normally receive.
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Q: My family is a military dependent family; do we include our housing allowance as income?
A: Benefits received in cash, such as housing allowances and food or clothing allowances, are considered income. EXCEPTION: If your housing is part of the military housing privatization initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income. Combat pay should not be included with your income.
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If your question was not answered in our FAQ, please contact us at (203) 630-4166.
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