Free and Reduced Q&A

Yes, but not automatically. Although receiving SNAP, TANF or FDPIR makes children eligible for free meals, they are not automatically enrolled to receive free meals. If you have not received a letter or email stating that your children were directly certified for free meals, you should complete an application listing your master case number (not Social Security number) to apply for benefits. Click on the “My School Apps” Quick Link to apply now.

Although all foster children are eligible for free meals, they are not automatically enrolled to receive free meals. If you have not received a letter or email stating that your foster child has been directly certified for free meals, you should complete an application on behalf of your foster child. Click on the “My School Apps” Quick Link to apply now.

The eligibility guidelines for Medicaid are different than the guidelines for school meals. If you have not received a letter or email stating that your children were directly certified for free or reduced meals, you should complete an income application to apply for benefits. Your household income may qualify you for free or reduced meals. Click on the “My School Apps” Quick Link to apply now.

The eligibility guidelines for WIC are different than the guidelines for school meals. Qualification for WIC does not qualify children for free or reduced meals. Children in households participating in WIC might be eligible for free or reduced price meals. Families should complete an application to apply for benefits.

Please read the letter carefully and follow the instructions. If any children in your household were missing from your eligibility notification or you are unsure what your letter means, contact our office immediately (402) 436-1746.

Yes. You must complete a new application every school year*. Your child will be charged full price for meals until your completed application is processed and approved. Be sure to fill out all the required information. We cannot approve an application that is incomplete. LPS is not responsible for lost paper applications. *If you received an email or letter stating that your children were directly certified for free meals for the new school year, a new application may not be needed. Call 402-436-1746 if you have questions. Click on the “My School Apps” Quick Link to apply online now.

Yes. This is the quickest way to qualify for benefits. The online application is very user friendly and asks for the same information as the paper application. Click on the “My School Apps” Quick Link to apply online now.

No. Use one application for all students in your household. We cannot approve an application that is incomplete. Be sure to list all your household members, including infants, children away at school and other adults living in your household. Incomplete applications cannot be processed.

Do the members of your household lack a permanent address? Are you staying together in a shelter, hotel, or other temporary housing arrangement? Does your family relocate on a seasonal basis? Are any children living with you who have chosen to leave their prior family or household? If you believe children in your household meet these descriptions and haven’t been told your children will get free meals, please call the LPS Homeless Outreach Specialist, (402) 436-1963 to see if they qualify.

List the amount that you normally receive. For example, if you normally make $1000 each month, but you missed some work last month and only made $900, put down that you made $1000 per month. If you normally get overtime, include it, but do not include it if you only work overtime sometimes. If you have lost a job or had your hours or wages reduced, use the new reduced amount as your current income. See also the “What is Income” section of this webpage.

Yes, you may apply at any time during the school year. For example, children with a parent or guardian who becomes unemployed may become eligible for free and reduced price meals if the household income drops below the income limit.

Yes. You, your children, or other household members do not have to be U.S. citizens to apply for free or reduced price meals.

See also the “What is Income” section of this webpage. Household members may not receive the types of income that we ask you to report on the application, or may not receive income at all. Whenever this happens, please write a 0 in the field. However, if any income fields are left empty or blank, those will also be counted as zeroes. Please be careful when leaving income fields blank, as we will assume you meant to do so.

The online application will allow any number of household members. If you are completing a paper application, attach an extra piece of paper and list additional household members.

Your basic pay and cash bonuses must be reported as income. If you get any cash value allowances for off-base housing, food, or clothing, it must also be included as income. However, if your housing is part of the Military Housing Privatization Initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income. Any additional combat pay resulting from deployment is also excluded from income.

If you disagree with the decision about your application call (402) 436-1746 and talk to the free and reduced official. You also may ask for a hearing by calling, emailing or writing Edith Zumwalt, Director, Nutrition Services Department, Telephone: (402) 436-1742, Email: ezum@lps.org, Address: PO Box 13, 5905 O Street, Lincoln NE 65810.

Yes. We will review your application for completeness. Each year a small sample of applications are randomly selected. Households are then contacted to provide written proof of income. Refer to the “Verification” section for additional information.

To find out how to apply for SNAP or other assistance benefits, please go online to accessnebraska.ne.gov or call 1-800-383-4278.

If you have other questions or need help, call (402) 436-1746

Bilingual Liaisons (402) 436-1997
Si necesita ayuda, por favor llame al teléfono: (402) 436-1997
Si vous voudriez d’aide, contactez nous au numero: (402) 436-1997

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