All students attending Jefferson and Fort Atkinson public schools as well as those at Lakeside Lutheran High School will be eligible for continued free lunches throughout the 2021-22 school year.

The area school districts and Lakeside Lutheran have qualified for the school year free lunch program after signing up for the pandemic-era Seamless Summer Option program.

All students enrolled at the following school(s) are eligible to receive school meals at no charge in the 2021-22 school year:

School District of Jefferson: East Elementary, West Elementary, Sullivan Elementary, Jefferson Middle School, Jefferson High School.

School District of Fort Atkinson: Barrie Elementary, Rockwell Elementary, Luther Elementary, Purdy Elementary, Fort Atkinson Middle School and Fort Atkinson High School, as well as Lakeside Lutheran High School in Lake Mills.

Local residents do not need to complete USDA Free and Reduced Price Meal Applications in order to receive free meals under this program.

However, Christina Oswald, food service director for the Fort Atkinson schools, is encouraging all area residents who would normally qualify for free and reduced-price meals to submit an application anyway.

She noted that though this will not make a difference as to whether students are able to receive the free meals at their local schools, it may qualify families for additional assistance, such as food share programs and milk and snack programs. BT), educational funding and additional benefits.

For additional information Oswald directed local families to contact their local school district’s administrative office and to speak with their district’s business services director.

The following household size and income criteria will be used for determining eligibility. Children from families whose annual income is at or below the levels shown are eligible for free and reduced price benefits.

A student still needs to be eligible to receive free milk if a split session student does not have access to the school lunch or breakfast service.

Application forms are going out to area families.

To apply for free or reduced price benefits or free milk, households must fill out the application and return it to the school (unless notified at the start of the school year that children are eligible through direct certification).

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

To obtain free or reduced price benefits or free milk for children in a household where one or more household members receive FoodShare, FDPIR, or Wisconsin Works (W-2) cash benefits, list the FoodShare, FDPIR or W-2 case number, program name, list the names of all school children, sign the application and return it to the school office.

For the school officials to determine eligibility for free or reduced price benefits or free milk of households not receiving FoodShare, FDPIR or W-2 cash benefits, the household must provide the following information requested on the application: names of all household members, total number of household members, and the adult signing the application form must also list the last four digits of his or her Social Security Number or mark the box to the right of “Check if no SSN.”

Also, the income received by each household member must be provided by amount and source (wages, welfare, child support, etc.).

Under the provisions of the free and reduced price benefit/meal and free milk policy each district’s Business Office will review applications and determine eligibility. If a parent or guardian is dissatisfied with the ruling of the official, he/she may wish to discuss the decision with the determining official on an informal basis.

If the parent/guardian wishes to make a formal appeal, he/she may make a request either orally or in writing to their school district’s business services manager. If a hearing is needed to appeal the decision, the policy contains an outline of the hearing procedure.

If a household member becomes unemployed or if the household size changes, the family should contact the school. Such changes may make the household eligible for free or reduced price benefits or free milk.

Children formally placed in foster care are also eligible for free meal benefits. Foster children may be certified as eligible without a household application.

Households with foster children and non-foster children may choose to include the foster child as a household member, as well as any personal income available to the foster child, on the same application that includes their non-foster children.

The information provided by the household on the application is confidential.

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