COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

P.O. BOX 2120

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120

 

SUPTS. MEMO NO. 9

November 7, 2003

 

REGULATORY

TO:

Division Superintendents

 

FROM:

Jo Lynne DeMary

Superintendent of Public Instruction

 

SUBJECT:

Verification, Racial/Ethnic, Reapplication and Reinstatement Reports for Free and Reduced Price Meal Applications

Due Dates:

January 20, 2004 Verification and Racial/Ethnic Report

March 1, 2004 Report on Reapplication and Reinstatement of Benefits

 

Verification Report

Federal regulations governing the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs require school divisions annually to select and verify a sample of applications approved for free or reduced priced meals. Verification is the process of confirming the eligibility of students who have applied for free or reduced price meals.

 

The procedures and requirements for Verification can be found in the U.S. Department of Agricultures Eligibility Guidance for School Meals Manual Part 9, pages 58-76. This manual has previously been distributed to all School Nutrition programs and can also be found online at http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Guidance/default.htm. Click on the word Guidance on the right side of the page.

 

This year school divisions are required to use the Verification module of the new School Nutrition Programs Web-based system (SNPweb). The School Nutrition Programs directors or contact people in your division have already been given access to the SNPweb via the Departments Single Sign-on for Web System (SSWS) portal. The verification worksheet component allows the user:

1.  To calculate the minimum required sample size of applications to be verified for both random and focused sampling. The sample size must be based on the number of meal applications on file as of October 31, 2003. Students approved for free meals through the direct certification process are excluded from the sample size.

  1. To report the results of verification to VDOE.

 

The verification process must be completed by each division on or before December 15, 2003. The date the verification process is considered complete is the date all letters have been sent to parents or guardians notifying them of a change in eligibility status, if such notification is required. If a change in status occurs for a student, regulations require the same status to be applied to all students in the household.

 

Results of verification activities for the school division are to be reported online through the SNPweb system, Verification Worksheet. This report must be completed and submitted online by January 20, 2004.

 

Prototype letters and forms for the verification process are posted in the Online Forms section of the SNPweb system.

 

Racial/Ethnic Data Report

School divisions are required to report the racial/ethnic breakdown of all students who have applied for meal benefits. This includes those who have been approved for free meals, reduced price meals, and students who have been denied benefits. The racial/ethnic information is based on the number of meal applications on file as of October 31, 2003. The applications for free and reduced price meals have a section for households to indicate racial/ethnic identity. Since this information is not required for application approval, many school divisions do not complete that item. If this information is missing from the application, school divisions should acquire the information from other school records that may be available or make a determination by observation.

 

The Racial/Ethnic Data Report must be completed manually by January 20, 2004, and filed with all verification documents. The reporting form (SNP 220) can be found on the Online Forms section of SNPweb.

 

Verification Reapplication and Reinstatement of Benefits

This year school divisions are required to report results of students whose benefits were terminated, have since reapplied and have had their free or reduced price meal benefits reinstated as of February 15, 2004. This report must be completed online in the SNPweb system by March 1, 2004.

 

Training on the verification component of SNPweb is currently being conducted regionally for all school nutrition directors and contact persons. The School Nutrition Programs specialist assigned to each region has coordinated this training with the appropriate individuals.

 

If you have any questions, please contact the school nutrition specialist assigned to your division or Catherine Digilio Grimes, director, School Nutrition Programs at (804) 225-2074.

 

Thank you for your continuing support.

 

JLD/CDG/idl