How to apply for free or reduced-price school meals

Chesterfield County Public Schools provides nutritious breakfasts and lunches in every school. Based on household size and income, students in elementary schools, middle schools and Chesterfield Community High School may qualify for free or reduced-price meals under the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program:

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Elementary and middle schools will distribute applications for free or reduced-price meals to all households. Applications are also available online at mychesterfieldschools.com, in school offices, in school cafeterias and at the school system’s Food and Nutrition Services Office, 7610 Whitepine Road.

Only one completed, signed application per family is required. If a household is not eligible now for free or reduced-price meals but experiences a financial change during the year, then a parent or guardian should submit another application. Students who qualify for reduced-price meals pay 30 cents for breakfast and 40 cents for lunch; the full price of breakfast is $1.40 and the full price of lunch is $2.15. During the 2014-2015 year, the reduced fee will be waived so that students who qualify for reduced-price breakfasts and lunches will receive them free.

Children in households enrolled in SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which was formerly the food stamp program) or TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) may not need to complete an application for free or reduced-price meals. If SNAP or TANF families are not notified before school opens in September, they should fill out an application for free or reduced-price meals.

Other children who may be eligible for free or reduced-price meals are homeless, migrant or runaway children; foster children who are the legal responsibility of a welfare agency or court, regardless of the income of the household in which they reside; and children in households participating in the Women, Infants and Children Program.

School officials will review applications and determine eligibility based on household size and gross income or information from the Virginia Department of Social Services and will notify households in writing of their eligibility. Households may discuss their eligibility determination or get more information by calling Rebecca Bryant at 743-3722.

Families whose application for free or reduced-price meals is denied may appeal the decision by contacting Andy Hawkins, Assistant Superintendent of Business and Finance, 7610 Whitepine Road, North Chesterfield, Va. 23237, phone 743-3722. Appeals may be made orally or in writing.

Chesterfield Community High is the only Chesterfield high school that participates in the federal school meal programs. Students in other Chesterfield high schools qualify for free lunches if their household receives SNAP or TANF or the student is a foster child. Applications are available in high school offices and at the school system’s Food and Nutrition Services Office, 7610 Whitepine Road.

Households that are notified of their eligibility but that do not want their children to receive free meals should call Rebecca Bryant at 743-3722.

The nondiscrimination policy for the U.S. Department of Agriculture is available here: www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?navid=NON_DISCRIMINATION