Schools can play an important role in letting families know about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Formerly known as Food Stamps, the program supplements the cost of groceries. If a child receives free lunch at school, then their family is most likely eligible for SNAP. Even when a child receives reduced or paid lunch, their family may still be eligible.
When applying for SNAP children are automatically enrolled for free or reduced meals, so this lessens the number of applications the school district has to process and reduces the number of students with overdue meal costs. It also raises a district’s identified student percentage.
In Allegheny, Cambria and Indiana counties, we have staff who can offer SNAP application assistance over the phone and through on-site sign-ups. In addition we can offer sample letters for schools to send home to parents and an online referral system for schools to refer families to.