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Questions about Minnesota Free School Meals Program?
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. 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:
Metro Transits’ Transit Assistance Program
FCC Affordable Connectivity Program/Reduced price internet programs
Some summer camps, athletics programs and/or child care offer scholarships or discounts.
What is included in the MN Free School Meals Program?
Students in Grades K-12:
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.
Students in Preschool:
At breakfast and lunch, the student must take all of the items included in the meal. This includes the entree, fruit, vegetable and milk.
What is NOT included in the MN Free School Meals Program?
Single item purchases and non-reimbursable meals are not free. Some examples include:
carton of milk
a second breakfast or a second lunch
meals that do not meet the minimum requirements
meals served to teachers, staff, and other adults
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