After two school years of students receiving free lunches provided by USDA, the lunch program in area schools has gone back to pre-pandemic status.

With lunches costing between $2 to $3, families need to look into the revised free and reduced price policy for school children who might qualify for the program and not pay the full price of meals under the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program.

To determine eligibility, household size and maximum annual household income is taken into consideration. Eligibility for free meals are: a two member family, $23,803; three, $29,939; four $36,075; five, $42,211; six, $48, 347; seven $54,483; eight, $60,619; for each additional family member add $6,139.

Eligibility for reduced price meals are: two member family, $33,874; three, $42,606; four, $51,338; five, $60,070; six, $68,802, seven, $77,534; eight, $86,266; for each additional family member add $8,732.

To apply, a family would need to fill out a free and reduced price school meals family application that is available at the local school’s superintendent’s office and return it to the school. The information provided is confidential and will be used to determine eligibility. Applications may be submitted anytime during the school year.

Foster children may be eligible regardless of the income of the household with whom they reside. Households with children who are eligible under the foster, Head Start, homeless, migrant or runaway programs should contact the school for assistance.

If a family member becomes unemployed or if family size changes, the family should contact their school to file a new application.

The number of children participating in the National School Lunch Program affects the schools ability to qualify for grants and other assistance.

Another benefit for families, the Affordable Connectivity Program provides households up to $30 per month toward their internet bills, as well as a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer or tablet.

All households with a child who was approved to receive free or reduced price school meals can qualify.

Families can check their eligibility, sign up and find fully-covered plans at or by calling 877.384.2575.

This benefit is not considered income for purposes of determining eligibility for free and reduced price school meals.

To find out more information about the school lunch programs, contact the local school’s superintendent’s office.