Districts offering free, reduced price meals

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The West Bonner County and Lake Pend Oreille schooll districts have announced its policy for free and reduced price meals for children unable to pay the full price for meals served under the National School Lunch and Free Provision 2 Breakfast programs.

West Bonner County School District schools participating in the program include Idaho Hill, Priest Lake, and Priest River elementary schools; Priest River Junior High School and Priest River Lamanna High School.

At the Lake Pend Oreille School District, schools participating in the both programs are Farmin Stidwell, Hope, Northside, Kootenai, Sagle, Washington and Southside elementaries, Sandpoint Middle School, Sandpoint High School, and Lake Pend Oreille High School. A district-sponsored lunch is served daily at Clark Fork Jr./Sr. High School.

For a household size of one, income must be $15,782 annually or $1,316 monthly for free meals or $1,872 monthly or $22,459 annually for reduced-price meals; for a two-person household, income must be $21,398 annually or $1,784 monthly for free meals or $30,451 annually or $2,538 for reduced-price meals.

For each additonal family member, add $5,616 annual income or $468 monthly income to reach free meal qualifications; or $7,992 annual income or $666 monthly income for reduced-price meals.

Application forms are available to all homes, along with a letter to parents or guardians, district officials said in a press release. To apply for free or reduced meal prices households should fill out the application and return it to the school. Additional copies of the form area available at each school.

The information provided will be used for the purpose of determining eligibility and may be verified at any time during the school year by school or other program officials.

Households with any member who is receiving food stamps, Temporary Assistance for Families in Idaho or Food Distribution on Indian Reservations are only required to provide the recipient’s name, their food stamp, TAFI or FDPIR case number, names of the student or students and an adult signature.

For other applications, the household must list the names of all household members, all household income with the amount, source and frequency of the income received by each member. If a household member does not have an income, the no-income box must be checked.

An adult signature is required along with the last four digits of the adult’s Social Security number. The signature of the adult household member certifies that the information provided is correct.

Foster children’s names may be included on a household application along with other non-foster children.

Foster children are eligible for school meal benefits, however, they must be the legal responsibility of the welfare agency of the courts.

Students who are homeless, runaway or migrant also are eligible for benefits. Household members do not have to be U.S. citizens for students to qualify for benefits.

Applications may be submitted at any time during the year.

Under the provisions of the policy, the determining official will review the applications and determine eligibility. Parents or guardians dissatisfied with the ruling may wish to discuss the ruling with the officials on an informal basis. Parents wishing to make a formal appeal may make a request either orally or in writing to the hearing official for a hearing on the decision.

District schools and central office in each district have copies of the policy, which can be reviewed by any interested party.

Information: West Bonner County School District, Terri Johnson, 208-448-4439, ext. 5; Lake Pend Oreille School District, Bobbie Coleman, 208-265-1569

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