HOUSEHOLD LETTER 

FREE AND REDUCED PRICE SCHOOL MEALS 

Dear Parent/Guardian: 

Children need healthy meals to learn. Cherokee Charter Academy offers healthy meals every school day. Pursuant to Section  2202(a) of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the FFCRA) (PL 116-127), as extended by the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021  and Other Extensions Act (PL 116-159), and in light of the exceptional circumstances of this public health emergency, the Food and  Nutrition Service (FNS) is establishing a nationwide waiver to allow school food authorities to feed all registered children at no cost but you  may or be required to complete the Annual Lunch Application based on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines.  

WHO CAN GET FREE OR REDUCED PRICE MEALS?  

  • All children in households receiving benefits from South Carolina SNAP or TANF, are eligible for free meals. • Foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals. • Children participating in their school’s Head Start program are eligible for free meals. 
  • Children who meet the definition of homeless, runaway, or migrant are eligible for free meals. 
  • Children may receive free or reduced price meals if your household’s income is within the limits on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. Your children may qualify for free or reduced price meals if your household income falls at or below the limits on this chart. 

Income Eligibility Guidelines 

Effective from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023

 

REDUCED PRICE MEALS – 185% 

 

FREE MEALS – 130%

Household size   

Annual 

Monthly  

Twice  per  month  

Every  two  weeks 

Weekly Annual Monthly 

Twice  per  month 

Every  two  weeks 

Weekly 

1 25,142 2,096 1,048 967 484 17,667 1,473 737 680 340 2 33,874 2,823 1,412 1,303 652 23,803 1,984 992 916 458 3 42,606 3,551 1,776 1,639 820 29,939 2,495 1,248 1,152 576 4 51,338 4,279 2,140 1,975 988 36,075 3,007 1,504 1,388 694 5 60,070 5,006 2,503 2,311 1,156 42,211 3,518 1,759 1,624 812 6 68,802 5,734 2,867 2,647 1,324 48,347 4,029 2,015 1,860 930 7 77,534 6,462 3,231 2,983 1,492 54,483 4,541 2,271 2,096 1,048 8 86,266 7,189 3,595 3,318 1,659 60,619 5,052 2,526 2,332 1,166 For each additional family  member, add 8,732 728 364 336 168 6,136 512 256 236 118

  1. HOW DO I KNOW IF MY CHILDREN QUALIFY AS HOMELESS, MIGRANT, OR RUNAWAY? Do the members of your household lack a permanent address? Are you staying together in a shelter, hotel, or other temporary housing arrangement? Does your family relocate on a seasonal basis? Are any children living with you who have chosen to leave their prior family or household? If you believe children in your household meet these descriptions and haven’t been told your children will get free meals, please call or e mail Lacey Shull- Lshull@cherokee.education 
  2. DO I NEED TO FILL OUT AN APPLICATION FOR EACH CHILD? No. Use one Free and Reduced Price School Meals Application for all students in your household. We cannot approve an application that is not complete, so be sure to fill out all required information. Return the completed application to: The front office at Cherokee Charter Academy
  3. SHOULD I FILL OUT AN APPLICATION IF I RECEIVED A LETTER THIS SCHOOL YEAR SAYING MY CHILDREN ARE ALREADY APPROVED FOR FREE MEALS? No, but please read the letter you got carefully and follow the instructions. If any children in your household were missing from your eligibility notification, contact Lacey Shull at Lshull@cherokee.education immediately. 
  4. CAN I APPLY ONLINE? Yes! You are encouraged to complete an online application instead of a paper application if you are able. The online application has the same requirements and will ask you for the same information as the paper application. Visit https://www.lunchapplication.com/ to begin or to learn more about the online application process. Contact Lacey Shull at Lshull@Cherokee.education if you have any  questions about the online application. 
  1. MY CHILD’S APPLICATION WAS APPROVED LAST YEAR. DO I NEED TO FILL OUT A NEW ONE? Yes. Your child’s application is only good for that school year and for the first few days of this school year.. You must send in a new application unless the school told you that your child is eligible for the new school year. If you do not send in a new application that is approved by the school or you have not been notified that your child is eligible for free meals, your child will be charged the full price for meals. 
  2. I GET WIC. CAN MY CHILDREN GET FREE MEALS? Children in households participating in WIC may be eligible for free or reduced price meals. Please send in an application. 
  3. WILL THE INFORMATION I GIVE BE CHECKED? Yes. We may also ask you to send written proof of the household income you report. 
  4. IF I DON’T QUALIFY NOW, MAY I APPLY LATER? Yes, you may apply at any time during the school year. For example, children with a parent or guardian who becomes unemployed may become eligible for free and reduced price meals if the household income drops below the income limit. 
  5. WHAT IF I DISAGREE WITH THE SCHOOL’S DECISION ABOUT MY APPLICATION? You should talk to school officials. You also may ask for a hearing by calling or writing to: John Kirell at Jkirell@cherokee.education
  6. MAY I APPLY IF SOMEONE IN MY HOUSEHOLD IS NOT A U.S. CITIZEN? Yes. You, your children, or other household members do not have to be U.S. citizens to apply for free or reduced price meals. 
  7. WHAT IF MY INCOME IS NOT ALWAYS THE SAME? List the amount that you normally receive. For example, if you normally make $1000 each month, but you missed some work last month and only made $900, put down that you made $1000 per month. If you normally get overtime, include it, but do not include it if you only work overtime sometimes. If you have lost a job or had your hours or wages reduced, use your current income. 
  8. WHAT IF SOME HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS HAVE NO INCOME TO REPORT? Household members may not receive some types of income we ask you to report on the application, or may not receive income at all. Whenever this happens, please write a 0 in the field. However, if any income fields are left empty or blank, those will also be counted as zeroes. Please be careful when leaving income fields blank, as we will assume you meant to do so. 
  9. WE ARE IN THE MILITARY. DO WE REPORT OUR INCOME DIFFERENTLY? Your basic pay and cash bonuses must be reported as income. If you get any cash value allowances for off-base housing, food, or clothing, it must also be included as income. However, if your housing is part of the Military Housing Privatization Initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income. Any additional combat pay resulting from deployment is also excluded from income. 
  10. WHAT IF THERE ISN’T ENOUGH SPACE ON THE APPLICATION FOR MY FAMILY? List any additional household members on a separate piece of paper, and attach it to your application. Contact Lshull@cherokee.education to receive a second application. 
  11. MY FAMILY NEEDS MORE HELP. ARE THERE OTHER PROGRAMS WE MIGHT APPLY FOR? To find out how to apply for South Carolina SNAP or other assistance benefits, contact your local assistance office or call South Carolina Department of Social Service (DSS) at (800) 616-1309. 

If you have other questions or need help, call Lacey Shull at 864-489-7192 

Sincerely,  

Jason Byrd

Director, Cherokee Charter Academy

 

The Charter Institute at Erskine College

Cherokee Charter Academy is authorized by the Charter Institute at Erskine College, a statewide charter school authorizer. For more information about the Institute, visit www.erskinecharters.org