EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – El Paso ISD Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) will provide the online meal application for non-CEP (Community Eligibility Provision) schools here. Students enrolled in (Community Eligibility Provision) CEP campuses will not need to apply for meal benefits. Students enrolled in CEP campuses can eat breakfast and lunch at no cost. For the list of non-CEP and CEP campuses, please see the Food and Nutrition Services web page is available by clicking here.

The application will determine a child’s eligibility for free and reduced-price meals and may assist in the determination of eligibility for other state or federal benefits. Only one application needs to be completed per household. FNS will notify the household of the child’s eligibility. The Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) administers school nutrition programs in Texas and offers an eligibility calculator at www.SquareMeals.org/ProgramEligibility.
Decisions regarding payment for school meals are made at the national government level, not by the school nutrition team or TDA. The dedicated staff at El Paso ISD FNS is looking forward to serving healthy, balanced meals to students in the new school year. These meals, whether paid, free, or reduced-price, offer a good source of nutrition for children.

Criteria for Free and Reduced-Price Meal Benefits
The following criteria will be used to determine a child’s eligibility for free or reduced-price meal
Income Eligibility

  1. Household income that is at or below the income eligibility levels
    Categorical or Automatic Eligibility
  2. Households receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary
    Assistance for Needy Families (TANF); or Food Distribution Program on Indian
    Reservations (FDPIR)

Program Participant Eligibility:

  1. Child’s status as a foster child, homeless, runaway, migrant, or displaced by a
    declared disaster
  2. Child’s enrollment in Head Start or Even Start

Income Eligibility
For those households that qualify for free or reduced-price meals based on income, an adult must fill out a free and reduced-price meal application and return it to fns@episd.org. Those
individuals filling out the application will need to provide the following information:

  1. Names of all household members
  2. Amount, frequency, and source of current income for each household member
  3. Last four digits of the Social Security Number of the adult household member who
    signs the application or, if the adult does not have a social security number, check the
    box for “No Social Security Number”
  4. Signature of an adult household member attesting that the information provided is

Categorical or Program Participant Eligibility
El Paso ISD FNS is working with local agencies to identify all children who are categorically and
program eligible. El Paso ISD FNS will notify the households of these children that they do not need to complete an application. Any household that does not receive a letter and feels it should contact fns@episd.org.

Any household that wishes to decline benefits should contact fns@episd.org.
Applications may be submitted anytime during the school year. The information households provide on the application will be used for the purpose of determining eligibility. The school officials may also verify applications at any time during the school year.

Determining Eligibility
Under the provisions of the free and reduced-price meal policy, Department Clerk II, Mary Lou
Sandoval, will review applications and determine eligibility. Households or guardians dissatisfied with the Reviewing Official’s eligibility determination may wish to discuss the decision with the Reviewing Official’s on an informal basis. Households wishing to make a formal appeal for a hearing on the decision may request either orally or in writing to Mary Lou Sandoval, Department Clerk II, 915-230-2180, mlsando1@episd.org.

Unexpected Circumstances
If a household member becomes unemployed or if the household size increases, the household
should contact the school. Such changes may make the children of the household eligible for benefits if the household’s income falls at or below the attached current income eligibility guidelines.