Northwest NEWS

August 21, 2000

School

Free and reduced-price meals available for qualified Northshore students

   The Northshore School District has announced its policy for free and reduced-price lunches/snacks and/or free or reduced-price breakfasts for children who qualify according to the eligibility standards for meals served under the National School Lunch and/or Breakfast Programs. Each school and the central office have a copy of the policy, which may be reviewed by any interested party.

   Application forms are being sent to all homes with a letter to parents or guardians. To apply for free or reduced-price meals, households should fill out the application and return it to the school. Additional copies are available at the principal's office in each school. The information provided on the application will be used for the purpose of determining eligibility and may be verified at any time during the school year by school or other program officials.

   For the school officials to determine eligibility, the household must provide the following information listed on the application: the names of everyone in the household, the amount of income each household member got last month and where it came from, the signature of an adult household member, and that adult's social security number, or the word "none" if the adult does not have a social security number. For a child who is a member of a food stamp household or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) assistance unit, the household should provide only the child's name, the food stamp or TANF case number and printed name and signature of an adult member on the application.

   Households which are certified as of August 1, 2000, to receive food stamps or TANF will receive a letter of direct certification for meals from the Department of Social and Health Services during August 2000. This certificate may be returned to the child's school in place of the completed application. Applications may be submitted at any time during the year.

   Under the provision of the free and reduced-price policy, the designated approving official(s) will review applications and determine eligibility. Parents or guardians dissatisfied with the ruling of the official may wish to discuss the decision with the approving official on an informal basis. Parents wishing to make a formal appeal may make the request either orally or in writing to the Director of Student Services, 18315 Bothell Way NE, Bothell, 489-6344, for a hearing on the decision.

   Households are required to report increases in household income of over $50 per month or $600 per year and decreases in household size. In the case of households that provide a food stamp or TANF case number, the household must notify school officials of any termination of benefits for the child. Also, if a household member becomes unemployed or if the household size increases, the household should contact the school. Such changes may make the children of the household eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

   In certain cases, foster children are also eligible for school meal benefits. Contact the school for more information.

   The information provided by the household is confidential.