IDOE releases free, reduced-price meals guidelines

GREENSBURG – The Indiana Department of Education recently released the income eligibility requirements for free and reduced-price school meals and milk programs.

According to the IDOE, the National School Lunch, School Breakfast, and Special Milk programs were created to support students unable to pay the full price for meals or milk.

These new guidelines will be in effect until June 30, 2020, and children from households that meet federal guidelines are eligible for these free or reduced-price meals and milk.

In order to meet guidelines to received reduced-priced meals, for a household of one, the yearly household income must be $23,107 or less. To receive free meals for a household of one, the yearly household income must be $16,237 or less.

For each additional member of a household, to be eligible for reduced-price meals, add $8,177 in order to meet those guidelines. For example, in order to be eligible for reduced-price meals for a house hold of two, the household income must be $31,284 or less. For a household of three, the household income must be $39,461. So on and so forth.

As for free meals guidelines, for each additional member of household, add $5,746. For a household of two, in order to meet guidelines, the household income must be $21,983 or less. For a household of three, the household income must be $27,729 or less.

Compared to last year, in order for a household of one to meet guidelines for free meals, a family’s yearly household income must have been $15,782 or less. For reduced price meals for a household of one, the household income must have been $22,459 or less.

A complete list of guidelines can be found by visiting www.doe.in.gov.

“We have more than 50 percent of students that qualify for free or reduced-price meals, and they also qualify for curricular fee assistance,” Greensburg Community School Corporation Superintendent Tom Hunter said. “It’s very important to our families that struggle to make ends meet. Our goal is that every student will be fed. There is no ‘If we can’t pay, we won’t eat’ here in our district.”

Decatur County Community Schools Superintendent has also mentioned just how important the free and reduced-price meal program is to students within their district.

More information from the IDOE

To apply for free or reduced-price benefits, households must complete the application form provided to all homes. One application should be submitted for all students enrolled in the school district. Households should answer all applicable questions on the form. An application that does not contain all the required information cannot be processed and approved by the school. The required information to be included is listed below.

The required information needed includes SNAP (FOOD STAMP) / TANF / MEDICAID HOUSEHOLDS. When SNAP, TANF, and Medicaid information is known by the school, households will receive a letter that states their child is enrolled in free or reduced meals, and an application does not need to be completed.

Households must also provide the names of all household members, household income the previous month and source of income received by each household members, signature of an adult household member, and the last four digits of the social security number of the adult signing the application.

Greensburg Community High School can be reached by calling 812-663-7176. North Decatur Jr./Sr. High School can be reached at 812-663-4204, and South Decatur Jr./Sr. High School can be reached at 812-591-3330. Greensburg Elementary school can be reached at 812-663-8112. North Decatur Elementary School can be reached at 812-663-9215, and South Decatur Elementary School can be reached at 812- 591-3115.

Contact: Joshua Heath, 812-663-3111 x217401; joshua.heath@greensburgdailynews.com.

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