1. If a family was on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP,
previously called food stamps) at the time of the application and were
selected for verification and are no longer receiving food stamps at the
time of verification, would the students still be free at verification? If the
family has documentation to prove that they were receiving SNAP (food stamps)
at the time of the application the students would still be free. If the family cannot
supply documentation of receiving SNAP (food stamps) at the time the
application was completed, then the verification would show that they are not
eligible for free meals based on SNAP (food stamp) status. The household could
reapply by completing an income application and verifying that income. This may
be done at the time of verification so there is no interruption in student meal
2. Does the verifying official and confirming official have to initial the
application or do they sign off on the Application Tracker? If the confirming
official confirms all applications they can sign off on the application, however any
application that is pulled for verification must also have the confirming official and
verifying official sign off on the Application Tracker.
3. If the district has to use the standard sample size verification procedures
(formerly error prone verification) are SNAP (food stamp) applications
verified? The only time SNAP (food stamp) applications would be verified by a
district using the standard sample size verification is if there are not enough
applications that qualify as error prone to complete the sample size and a SNAP
(food stamp) application was selected at random from all applications on file.
See Page 87 of the manual for more instructions.
4. If you are using Alternate 1 for verification, do you still need to keep track
of all error prone applications? No. See pages 88-89 for instructions on
Alternate 1 verification.
5. Did CNU, ADE change the verification terms to Alternate 1 and Alternate 2
just to mess with our minds? No, USDA did that to all of us.
6. If a dual eligibility application is chosen for verification do we verify the
income or the food stamps? Both. See pages 103 - 104, question 15 in the
manual. However, only the side of the application that was necessary for the
district’s verification activity (for example if district must use standard sample size
– formerly called error prone) is reported on the Verification Summary Report
7. If a household is terminated due to non-response on verification, can the
household reapply? Yes, but the new application must be verified at the time
the household reapplies. See Page 99 of the manual for more information.
8. If the district must verify 3% of the applications and there are a total of 101
applications can the district verify 3 applications? No, the district would
verify 4 applications (3.03 applications) always round up when determining the
number of applications to be verified.
9. If the district pulls more applications than is required for verification (for
example 3% is 40 applications and we pull 50 applications to verify) how is
non-response calculated? The non-response rate is calculated on the number
of applications pulled for verification. The district should not be pulling more
applications than the 3% required to meet the verification requirement.
10. What if a household responds by saying they will not send verification
information because the status has changed? The household responded and
the student’s meal status is changed to paying status. The determining official
should document the call for evidence of response. Per USDA instructions this
would be considered a “No Response” due to the household not turning in
11. If the district confirms all applications at the time of determination do the
applications that are pulled for verification have to be confirmed again?
Yes. The confirming official must sign off on the application tracker when the
application is pulled for verification and the application is confirmed the second
12. Can a household use income tax return from previous year for verification?
Only for self employed or seasonal workers. Everyone else would need to verify
current income, not previous year’s income.
13. Should I code error prone applications at the time of determination or
later? If the district must use error prone applications for verification activities it
is best to designate error prone applications at the time of determination.
14. What defines a questionable application that should be verified for cause?
Knowledge beyond the application, for example someone puts zero income on
the application and the determining official knows the person works at a local
store then this would be a questionable application.
15. Can verification activities begin before October 1st? Yes, see the top of page
85 of the manual.
16. Does the verification notice to households have to be certified? No, it is not
required, however that is a good way to document that the household received
the verification letter.
Pre K and / or contract meals
1. If the district has always contracted Head Start meals, wouldn’t it be
better if those children were put on a list and child nutrition count them
for reimbursement? If the Head Start program is contracted meals then the
meals will not be reimbursable in our program. Pre School students do not
count in the state funding formula, so the increase in free and reduced lunch
percentages would not matter to the district.
2. Can students in a school funded pre school program complete
applications and would those students be included in verification? Yes,
see the Commissioners Memo that is published each school year regarding
Preschool October 1 reporting. These applications would be included in
verification activities. Pre School students do not count in the state funding
formula, so the increase in free and reduced lunch percentages would not
matter to the district.
3. If Head Start meals are contracted would those Head Start students be
put on the Child Nutrition roster? If these meals are contracted then those
students will not be on the roster and will not be reported in APSCN Cycle 2
Reports 336 or 436.
4. If Preschool meals are on contract does the household complete an
application? You do not claim reimbursement on contract meals so you do
not need an application. All meals are sold at the same price regardless of who
consumes the meal.
5. If Head Start and Even Start students are not served meals by the
district’s child nutrition program can the students be approved for free
meals so that the district has a better percentage of free and reduced? If
the students are not being served reimbursable meals by the child nutrition
program then the students cannot be approved for free meals. Pre K eligibility
does not count in determining state funds.
6. How should ABC students be handled at the beginning of the school year
since ABC guidelines indicate that no child should be denied a meal? All
children are considered paid until current eligibility can be established. If the
student is a sibling on an application from the previous year then the student
can receive meal benefits based on the 30 day carryover. ABC funds can be
used to pay for student meals prior to determination of eligibility. After
determination of eligibility the ABC program has funds to pay the reduced
portion of reduced price meals and the full cost of meals served to paying