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FAQ Free and Reduced-Price School Meals ACT

Children need healthy meals to learn. EASTCONN offers healthy meals every school day. Lunch costs $ 3.00. Your children may qualify for either free meals or reduced-price meals. The reduced price is $ .40 for lunch. This packet includes an application for free or reduced-price meal benefits and detailed instructions.

NOTE: Children receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Family Assistance (TFA) benefits may be directly certified and automatically eligible for free meals without applying for benefits. Questions regarding SNAP/TFA and direct certification should be sent to the determining official Heather Plourde at 860-336-9054. If you have received a NOTICE OF DIRECT CERTIFICATION for free meals, do not complete the application. Let the school know if any children in your household are not listed on the Notice of Direct Certification letter you received. The answers to common questions below can help you with the application process.

The application is available online to be printed, however, it is unable to be filled out electronically at this time. Visit the Food Services Website to begin or to learn more about the online application process. Contact Heather Plourde at 860- 336-9054 or hplourde@eastconn.org if you have any questions about the online application

No. Use one Free and Reduced-price School Meals Application for all students in your household. We cannot approve an application that is not complete, so be sure to fill out all required information. Return the completed application to Heather Plourde 742 Upper Maple St. Danielson, CT 06239

Do the members of your household lack a permanent address? Are you staying together in a shelter, hotel, or other temporary housing arrangement? Does your family relocate on a seasonal basis? Are any children living with you who have chosen to leave their prior family or household? If you believe children in your household meet these descriptions and you have not been told your children will get free meals, please contact:

Amy Margelony
Amy Margelony
Director of Pupil Services
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Children in households participating in WIC may be eligible for free or reduced-price meals. Please send in an application.

Yes, you may apply at any time during the school year. For example, children with a parent or guardian who becomes unemployed may become eligible for free and reduced-price meals if the household income drops below the income limit.

Yes. You, your children or other household members do not have to be U.S. citizens to apply for free or reduced-price meals.

Yes. Your child’s application is only good for that school year and for the first few days of this school year. You must send in a new application unless the school told you that your child is eligible for the new school year.

To find out how to apply for SNAP benefits and to contact the Department of Social Services office in your town, contact United Way’s free referral number 2-1-1 (free call, statewide).

No, but please read the letter carefully and follow the instructions. If any children in your household were missing from your eligibility notification, contact Heather Plourde at 860-336-9054 immediately.

Your basic pay and cash bonuses must be reported as income. If you get any cash value allowances for off-base housing, food or clothing, or receive Family Subsistence Supplemental Allowance payments, these must also be included as income. However, if your housing is part of the Military Housing Privatization Initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income. Any additional combat pay resulting from deployment is also excluded from income.

You should talk to school officials. You also may ask for a hearing by calling or writing Thomas Cronin, Director of Educational Services 376 Hartford Tpke Hampton CT 06247 860-455-1505.

List the amount that you normally receive. For example, if you normally make $1,000 each month, but you missed some work last month and only made $900, put down that you made $1000 per month. If you normally get overtime, include it, but do not include it if you only work overtime sometimes. If you have lost a job or had your hours or wages reduced, use your current income.

Household members may not receive some types of income we ask you to report on the application, or may not receive income at all. When this happens, please write “0” in the field. However, if any income fields are left empty or blank, those will also be counted as zeroes. Please be careful when leaving income fields blank, as we will assume you meant to do so.

List any additional household members on a separate piece of paper and attach to your application. Contact Heather Plourde at 860-336-9054 or hplourde@eastconn.org to receive a second application.

All children in households receiving SNAP or TFA benefits are eligible for free meals.

• Foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals.

• Children participating in their school’s Head Start program are eligible for free meals.

• Children who meet the definition of homeless or runaway are eligible for free meals.

• Children may receive free or reduced-price meals if your household’s income is within the limits of the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. Your children may qualify for free or reduced-price meals if your household income falls at or below the limits on this chart:

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Yes. We may also ask you to send written proof of the household income you report.

If you have other questions or need help, call 860-336-9054.

Nondiscrimination Statement: This explains what to do if you believe you have been treated unfairly. In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD- 3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights 1400 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: program.intake@usda.gov. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Connecticut State Department of Education • Revised June 2016