Households must be notified, either in writing or verbally, of their child’s approved free or reduced eligibility status within 10 operating days of receipt of the application. The SFA may e-mail the notification of the household’s approval for meal benefits to the adult household member who signed the application.
Households with children who are denied benefits must be provided with prompt written notification of the denial. The notification may be provided by mail or e-mail to the adult household member who signed the application. Posting the denial on the “notification” page of an online system does not meet this requirement. Likewise, informing the household of denial via telephone does not meet this requirement.
The denial notification must advise the household of:
- Reason for denial of benefits;
- Right to appeal;
- Instructions on how to appeal; and
- Ability to re-apply for free and reduced price benefits at any time during the school year
The SFA must notify the household about eligibility established through direct certification.
The notification must include the following information:
- The child is eligible for free benefits;
- No further application is necessary;
- An explanation of extended eligibility and how to notify the SFA of any additional children in the household not listed on the notification; and
- How to notify the SFA if free benefits for directly certified children are not wanted
This notification must also be provided to households with children directly certified through the letter method or through contacts with officials, such as the SFA’s homeless liaison or a foster care agency.