Schools announce guidelines for programs

NEWS_SchoolPrograms
The Naugatuck and Region 16 school districts have announced their policies for determining eligibility of children who may receive free or reduced price meals or free milk.

The income guidelines (pictured in the graph above) will be used in Connecticut from July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015 for determining eligibility.

Children from families whose income is at or below the levels shown are eligible for free or reduced price meals or free milk. Application forms are being sent to all homes with a letter to parents. To apply for free or reduced price meals or free milk, households should fill out the application and return it to the school. Additional copies are available at the principal’s office at each school. Applications may be submitted at any time during the year.

No application is required if the district directly certifies a child based on a household member receiving assistance from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or Temporary Family Assistance program. All children in these households are eligible for free meal benefits. Naugatuck households receiving SNAP benefits or TFA for their children should only submit an application if they are not notified of their eligibility by Oct. 15. Households in Region 16 (Beacon Falls and Prospect) should submit an application if they are not notified of their eligibility by Sept. 19.

If a child is not directly certified, the household should complete a free and reduced price meal application form. Households receiving assistance under the programs will be notified of their eligibility, and their children will be provided free benefits unless the household notifies the school that it chooses to decline benefits.

When known to school officials, households will be notified of any child’s eligibility for free meals if the individual child is categorized as either homeless, runaway as defined by law, or enrolled in an eligible Head Start, Even Start or pre-kindergarten class as defined by law. For any child not listed on the eligibility notice, the households should contact the district or school.

Foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals. A foster parent does not have to complete an application if they can submit a copy of the legal document or legal court order showing that the child is a foster child.

Additionally, a foster child is eligible for free meals and may be included as a member of the foster family if the foster family chooses to also apply for benefits. If the foster family is not eligible for free or reduced price meal benefits, it does not prevent a foster child from receiving free meal benefits.

Naugatuck school principals or their designees will review applications and determine eligibility. The child nutrition director in Region 16 will review applications and determine eligibility.

If a parent is dissatisfied with the ruling of the determining official, the parent can discuss the decision with the official on an informal basis.

Naugatuck parents can request a formal appeal either orally or in writing to Robert Butler, Business Manager, 380 Church St., Naugatuck, CT 06770 or (203) 720-5265.

Region 16 parents can request a formal appeal orally or in writing to: Regional School District No. 16 Superintendent, 207 New Haven Road, Prospect, CT 06712 or (203) 758-6671.

If a household member becomes unemployed or if household size changes at any time, the family should contact the school to file a new application. Such changes may make the children of the household eligible for reduced price meals, free meals, or free milk, if the family income falls at or below the levels shown above.

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