We have joined Minnesota’s Free School Meals Program. Our schools already offer healthy meals each day. Now, all in-person students can get one breakfast and one lunch free of charge while at school – no application required.
What is the Minnesota Free School Meals Program?
The Minnesota Free School Meals Program provides state reimbursement to schools that participate in the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program so that students can have one breakfast and one lunch at no cost at school.
Can the meals be picked up or brought home like we did during the pandemic?
No. Congregate meal service is required in the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program. Meals may not be taken off campus, sent home, delivered, or picked up by parents or others.
Do I still need to complete the Application for Educational Benefits?
It is important for families to complete the Application for Educational Benefits (aka Free/Reduced-Price Meal Benefits Application). Applications for Educational Benefits determine how much funding your child’s school receives for educational programs and supports. Additionally, eligible families can qualify for other benefits, such as:
• WIC Benefits
• Metro Transits’ Transit Assistance Program
• FCC Affordable Connectivity Program/Reduced price internet programs
• Some summer camps, athletics programs and/or child cares offer scholarships or discounts.
Scroll down to the Meal Accounts, Prices and Payments section for information on how to apply.
What is included in the MN Free School Meals Program?
• At breakfast, the student must choose at least 3 items to be counted as a reimbursable meal. The student must choose a ½ cup serving of fruit or vegetable as part of their breakfast.
• At lunch, the student must choose at least 3 components to be counted as a reimbursable meal. The student must choose a ½ cup serving of fruit or vegetable as part of their lunch.
What is NOT included in the MN Free School Meals Program?
Single item purchases and non-reimbursable meals are not free. Some examples include:
• a second carton of milk
• snack items
• second entrée
• a second breakfast or a second lunch
• meals that do not meet the minimum requirements
• meals served to teachers, staff, and other adults
School meal programs nationwide are experiencing many of the same supply chain issues that have impacted restaurants and grocery stores since the start of the pandemic. Our school nutrition team is committed to ensuring students continue to have access to healthy meals each school day. Just as families had to make substitutions on grocery lists, schools will have to make some last-minute changes to our regular menus, based on availability.
We hope parents and students will be patient as we sort through these supply chain issues. We may not have the same menu choices that we typically offer our students, but we'll be sure that all students are nourished and ready to learn.
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/ad-3027.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.