The Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) is a powerful federal option that enables high-needs schools to offer breakfast and lunch to students at no charge. Any district, group of schools in a district, or school with 40 percent or more “identified students” – children who are certified eligible for free school meals without a household application – can choose to participate. Identified students include children directly certified through data-matching because their households receive SNAP, TANF, or FDPIR, and in some states, Medicaid benefits, as well as children who are certified for free meals without an application because they are homeless, migrant, enrolled in Head Start, or in foster care. For more information about this provision, how it works, and its benefits, see our Community Eligibility page.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has issued a nationwide waiver to give states and school districts more time and flexibility to plan for the 2023-2024 school year. States must publish a list of eligible schools, near eligible schools (schools with 30 to 40 percent identified students), and currently participating schools and school districts by May 1, 2023. School districts have until June 30, 2023, to opt in for the 2023-2024 school year. Click on a state to be directed to the state agency's website where you can download a copy of that state's list. If your state has not posted their list yet, please check back. FRAC will be continuing to update the map as more states post their lists.
Last updated June 1, 2023.