(WHTM) – The Pennsylvania Department of Education has announced the recent release of the United States Department of Agriculture’s new federal eligibility guidelines for free and reduced school meals.

“Free and reduced-price meals ensure at-risk students have access to nutritious food, enabling them to focus in the classroom and learn, grow, and achieve,” said Secretary of Education Khalid N. Mumin said. “We know that food insecurity impacts communities across the Commonwealth and beyond, and the Department of Education encourages all eligible households to apply for this benefit.”

These guidelines determine eligibility for the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, the Special Milk Program for Children, the Child and Adult Care Food Program, and the Summer Food Service Program. 

The new guidelines for the upcoming 2023-2024 school year will be effective July 1, 2023, until further notice.

Family SizeAnnualMonthlyTwice Per Month​Every Two Weeks​Weekly
​Each additional family member add:​+$9,509​+$793​+$397​+$366​+$183

Households that receive benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) can apply using a SNAP or TANF case number. Households that are enrolled in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) or Medicaid may also qualify and can apply with a Household Meal Benefit Application.

Other households can find more information online on the COMPASS website.