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Other Public Benefits

Child Nutrition Programs
The National School Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program (SBP) and Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) provide nutritious meals to children in New York City Public Schools. These programs help low and moderate income families meet their children's nutritional needs. Child nutrition programs do not require citizenship or legal immigration status. All immigrants can participate, regardless of residency status.

School Breakfast and Lunch Programs
The National School Breakfast and Lunch Programs are federal programs providing free, reduced price or full price breakfast and lunch at participating schools throughout New York State. The meals are the same for all children regardless of whether they receive meals for free, low cost at full price.

Eligibility Requirements
All children attending schools that offer these programs can receive breakfast and lunch. Breakfast is free for all students. Some children will qualify for free or reduced price lunch, and others pay the full cost of meals, depending on family and income. The income chart below sets forth the different meal costs.

NYC School Meals
Gross Income Levels

This chart is only a guide. Individuals should see school office personnel for assistance.
Meal Cost  Monthly Income For Family Size  Each Extra Person, Add: 
1 2 3 4 5
Free Lunch $1,211 $1,640 $2,069 $2,498 $2,927 $429
Reduced Price Lunch (25¢) paid by family $1,723 $2,333 $2,944 $3,554 $4,165 $611
Full Price Lunch ($1.50) paid by family Over $1,723 Over $2,333 Over $2,944 Over $3,554 Over $4,165 $611
NOTE: Chart effective July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013.
Subject to annual income updates.

Breakfast and School Lunch Program Benefits
Children participating in these programs may be given numbers, tickets or swipe cards, may prepay for meals, or may simply pay at school. The meals are the same for all children.

Breakfast consists of 4 food items: milk, grain, protein and vegetable/fruit/juice

Lunch consists of five items: milk, protein, grain, and vegetable/fruit (2)

How to Apply for Breakfast and School Lunch Programs
Each year, your child receives a school lunch form from her school. To apply for free or reduced price meals, submit the school lunch form to your child's school as soon as possible. Please refer to the guidelines contained in the application kit when completing the enrollment form. Your child's school cannot approve an application that is not complete, so be sure to fill out all the required information.

The application is available in English, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, French, Greek, Haitian-Creole, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Korean, Russian, Polish, and Urdu. You can obtain an application from the website of the Department of Education  

Summer Food Service Program
The Summer Food Service Program provides healthy meals for low-income children during the summer. In neighborhoods where 50% of the school children are eligible for free/reduced price meals, open programs may operate without requiring proof of income from participating children. In areas that don't meet the 50% requirement, enrolled programs may operate and are required to document the families' income for participating children.

Eligibility Requirements
Every child under 19 is eligible regardless of income. Programs where the SFSP may be offered include schools, camps, youth programs and other programs for children.

Summer Food Service Program Benefits
All open sites may feed any child under the age of 19. Programs may provide breakfasts, lunches, and/or snacks.

How to Apply for the Summer Food Service Program
No individual applications are required in open sites. Enrolled sites may have children sign in and compare the sign-in list to school meal eligibility data or may collect family income from participating children at the time of enrollment.


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