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Free & Reduced FAQ

Free and Reduced FAQ

1. Do I need to fill out an application for each child?

No. Complete the application to apply for free or reduced price meals. 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 their school office or cafeteria

2. Who can get free meals?

All children in households receiving benefits through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Ohio Works First (OWF) benefits can get free meals regardless of your income. Also, your children can get free meals if your household’s gross income is within the free limits on the Federal Income Guidelines.

3. Can foster children get free meals?

Yes, foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court, are eligible for free meals. Any foster child in the household is eligible for free meals regardless of income.

4. Can homeless, runaway and migrant children get free meals?

Yes, children who meet the definition of homeless, runaway, or migrant qualify for free meals. If you have not been told your children will get free meals, please call or email Shawn Blazer at (937) 325-7615 or shawnblazer@nelsd.org to see if they qualify.

5. Who can get reduced price meals?

Your children can get low cost meals if your household income is within the reduced price limits on the Federal Eligibility Income Chart shown on Free and Reduced application.

6. Should I fill out an application if I receive a letter this school year saying my children are approved for free meals?

No, but please read the letter carefully and follow the instructions. If any of your children in your household were missing from the eligibility notification, contact Cassie Gausel at cassiegausel@nelsd.org, 4435 Bosart Road, Springfield, OH 45503, or (937) 325-7615, immediately. 

7. My Child’s application was approved last year. Do I need to fill out another one?

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.

8. I get WIC. Can my child(ren) get free meals?

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

9. Will the information I give be checked?

Yes, we may ask you to send written proof.

10. If I don’t qualify now, may I apply later?

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.

11. What if I disagree with the school’s decision about my application?

You should talk to school officials. You also may ask for a hearing by calling emailing or writing to Superintendent John Kronour, Ph.D.: NELSD, 1414 Bowman Road, Springfield, OH 45502 (937) 325-7615 or johnkronour@nelsd.org.

12. May I apply if someone in my household is not a U.S. citizen?

Yes. You or your child(ren) do not have to be a U.S. citizen to qualify for free or reduced price meals.

13. Who should I include as members of my household?

You must include all people living in your household, related or not (such as grandparents, other relatives, or friends) who share income and expenses. You must include yourself and all children who live with you. If you live with other people who are economically independent (for example, people who you do not support, who do not share income with you or your children, and who pay a pro-rated share of expenses), do not include them.

14. What if my income is not always the same?

List the amount that you normally receive. For example, if you normally make $1000 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.

15. We are in the military, do we include our housing allowance as income?

If you get an off-base housing allowance, it must be included as income. However, if your housing is part of the Military Housing Privatization Initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income.

If you have other questions or need help, call 937-325-7615 ask for Cassie Gausel or email cassiegausel@nelsd.org.

USDA Nondiscrimination Statement

In accordance with federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity.

Program information may be made available in languages other than English. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication to obtain program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language), should contact the responsible state or local agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.

To file a program discrimination complaint, a Complainant should complete a Form AD-3027, USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form which can be obtained online at: https://www.usda.gov/sites/default/files/documents/USDA-OASCR%20P-Complaint-Form-0508-0002-508-11-28-17Fax2Mail.pdf, from any USDA office, by calling (866) 632-9992, or by writing a letter addressed to USDA. The letter must contain the complainant’s name, address, telephone number, and a written description of the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) about the nature and date of an alleged civil rights violation. The completed AD-3027 form or letter must be submitted 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; or
  2. Fax:
    (833) 256-1665 or (202) 690-7442; or
  3. Email:
    program.intake@usda.gov
     

    This institution is an equal opportunity provider.