The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) provide nutritionally balanced meals to students in over 100,000 public and non-profit private schools and residential childcare programs across the country. Administered by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the NSLP/SBP allows students whose families meet certain income requirements to receive breakfast, lunch, and after-school snacks at a free or reduced price.
Healthy school meals play an essential role in helping students thrive in and out of the classroom. Studies show that school meals help reduce absenteeism, improve test scores, and reduce disruptions in the classroom.* A school breakfast and lunch provide a minimum of UDSA’s daily recommended dietary allowance for key nutrients (25% and over 30% respectively).
*Food Research and Action Center (FRAC). “Breakfast for Learning.” Spring 2014.
To see if your student qualifies for free or reduced-price school meals, parents or guardians can submit an application that is provided by the school district. Families may apply at any time throughout the school year. Please reach out to your school to request an application or for specific questions.
Not sure of your child’s eligibility? Income eligibility guidelines are available online for each school year to help you determine eligibility based on your household size and income level. There are no restrictions based on immigration status. Visit www.fns.usda.gov/school-meals/income-eligibility-guidelines for details.