THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
Office of P-20 Education Policy
This memorandum announces the income eligibility guidelines for the 2023-2024 school year and provides each School Food Authority (SFA) with the forms and guidance needed to process applications for free and reduced-price meals and/or milk. This memorandum supersedes the previously issued New York State Education Department (NYSED) Policy Booklet.
As a reminder, students in New York State that are approved for reduced-price meals will receive breakfast and lunch meals and snacks served through the Afterschool Snack Program at no charge. Click here for more information: Increase in State Reimbursement for Reduced Price Meals.
USDA Eligibility Manual for School Meals
The USDA Eligibility Manual for School Meals provides comprehensive information on the Federal requirements, policies, and procedures for establishing eligibility in the Child Nutrition Programs. This is intended to help School Food Authorities (SFAs) accurately determine, certify, and verify children’s eligibility for free and reduced-price school meals and free milk.
SFAs must use the 2023-2024 School Year income eligibility guidelines to approve free and reduced-price income applications for school meals. These guidelines are family-size income levels prescribed annually by the Secretary of Agriculture for determining eligibility for free and reduced-price meals and free milk.
NYSED Eligibility Prototype Documents
Free and Reduced Price Income Application and Application Fact Sheet
Special Milk Program Letter
Notification Letter for School Meals
Notification Letter for Directly Certified Students
Meal Services to Children with Disabilities
Consent to Release Eligibility Information
SFAs must take reasonable steps to ensure meaningful access to their programs and activities by persons with limited English proficiency. USDA features foreign language translations of the Prototype Application for Free and Reduced Price School Meals as a template to assist SFAs in serving households where English is not spoken as a primary language.
In addition to the application form, each USDA translated packet also includes application instructions and a parent letter/FAQ. USDA also provides a packet of communications documents to be used by SFAs for information sharing requests, income verification, and benefit issuance notices to households.
The translated documents can be found here: Translated Applications | Food and Nutrition Service (usda.gov).