Free and Reduced-Priced Food Services
The Superintendent shall be responsible for implementing the District’s free and reduced-price food services policy and all applicable programs.
Eligibility Criteria and Selection of Children
A student’s eligibility for free and reduced-price food services shall be determined by the income eligibility guidelines, family-size income standards, set annually by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and distributed by the Illinois State Board of Education.
At the beginning of each school year, by letter, the District shall notify students and their parents/guardians of: (1) eligibility requirements for free and reduced-price food service; (2) the application process; (3) the name and telephone number of a contact person for the program; and (4) other information required by federal law. The Superintendent shall provide the same information to: (1) informational media, the local unemployment office, and any major area employers contemplating layoffs; and (2) the students’ registration materials. Parents/guardians enrolling a child in the District for the first time, any time during the school year, shall receive the eligibility information.
The District shall avoid publicly identifying students receiving free or reduced-price meals and shall use methods for collecting meal payments that prevent identification of children receiving assistance.
A family may appeal the District’s decision to deny an application for free and reduced-price food services or to terminate such services as outlined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 7 C.F.R. §245.7, Determining Eligibility for Free and Reduced-Price Meals and Free Milk in Schools. The Superintendent shall establish a hearing procedure for adverse eligibility decisions and provide by mail a copy of them to the family. The District may also use these procedures to challenge a child’s continued eligibility for free or reduced-price meals or milk.
During an appeal, students previously receiving food service benefits shall not have their benefits terminated. Students who were denied benefits shall not receive benefits during the appeal.
The Superintendent shall keep on file for a period of 3 years a record of any appeals made and the hearing record. The District shall also maintain accurate and complete records showing the data and method used to determine the number of eligible students served free and reduced-price food services. These records shall be maintained for 3 years.
FOOD SERVICES MANAGEMENT: FREE LUNCH AND/OR MILK
Availability of free lunch and/or milk shall be advertised annually, such notice to provide the eligibility requirements in terms of income level or other qualifying circumstances.
The identity of children receiving free lunch and/or milk shall be kept confidential.
|REVIEW HISTORY||1995, 2003, 2016, December 2019|