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Policy and ARM for SBP

Administrator’s Reference Manual (ARM) Update

PLEASE NOTE: The ARM contains state and regulatory guidance for standard operations. For deviations and flexibilities to standard NSLP operations as a result of COVID-19, please refer to the FAQs on the SquareMeals Coronavirus page for more information.

SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual

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Complete ARM          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 1. Program Overview           SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 2. Program Application & Agreement          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 2a. Meal Pattern Certification          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 3. Civil Rights & Confidentiality          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 4. Eligibility Determination          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 5. Special Provision Options          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 6. Verification of Eligibility          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 7. Breakfast Meals          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 8. Lunch Meals          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 9. Pre-Kindergarten Meals          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 10. Afterschool Snacks & Meals          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 11. Summer Meals          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 12. Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 13. Special Milk Program          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 14. USDA Foods          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 14a. USDA Foods Processing          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 15. Program Integrity          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 16. Financial System          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
Section 16a. Contract Management          SBP Handbook: Administrator's Reference Manual
USDA Policy  Minimize 
USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) issues policy memoranda to provide guidance on implementing NSLP. Click here to see these memos on the USDA site.




Eligibility Manual: Determining and Verifying Eligibility for School Meals  Minimize 

The USDA Eligibility Manual is available at http://www.fns.usda.gov/school-meals/guidance-and-resources. This manual contains information on federal requirements regarding the determination and verification of eligibility for free and reduced price meals in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP). These provisions also apply to the determination of eligibility for free milk under the Special Milk Program (SMP). This manual is to be used in conjunction with Section 4, Determining Eligibility in the Administrator's Reference Manual (ARM).



New Texas School Nutrition Laws  Minimize 

Two bills affecting school nutrition in Texas were passed during the 84th Legislative Session and signed into law by the Governor. One of the new laws offers an alternative way to fund school breakfast for students eligible for free or reduced price meals and the other addresses policies for students purchasing meals after their prepaid funds are exhausted. The bills are effective immediately.

HB 1305—Breakfast Mandate
Starting with School Year 2015-2016, public and charter schools that are mandated to offer breakfast may operate a locally funded breakfast program in lieu of the federally funded School Breakfast Program. 

School districts or charter schools may have schools that operate the School Breakfast Program and other schools that operate a locally funded breakfast program. In these cases, the school district or charter school must fully fund its locally funded breakfast program from resources other than the Child Nutrition Program. 

Locally funded breakfast programs are eligible for state compensatory funding. Please note state compensatory funding is administered by the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

HB 3562—Charge Policy
If a school district allows students to use prepaid meal cards or accounts to purchase school meals, the district must establish a grace period during which a student is able to charge meals after the prepaid funds are exhausted.  

The school district must also notify the student’s parent or guardian that the student’s meal card or account balance is exhausted. The district is not allowed to charge a fee or interest in connection with meals purchased by the students during the grace period. When the school district notifies the student’s parent or guardian that the student has a negative balance, the district may set a repayment schedule for the meal charges.



Assistance available in English and Spanish. Please call 877-TEX-MEAL (877-839-6325) for help.

In accordance with federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity.

Program information may be made available in languages other than English. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication to obtain program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language), should contact the responsible state or local agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.

To file a program discrimination complaint, a Complainant should complete a Form AD-3027, USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form which can be obtained online at: https://www.usda.gov/sites/default/files/documents/USDA-OASCR%20P-Complaint-Form-0508-0002-508-11-28-17Fax2Mail.pdf, from any USDA office, by calling (866) 632-9992, or by writing a letter addressed to USDA. The letter must contain the complainant’s name, address, telephone number, and a written description of the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) about the nature and date of an alleged civil rights violation. The completed AD-3027 form or letter must be submitted to USDA by:

1. Mail:
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; or
2. Fax: (833) 256-1665 or (202) 690-7442; or
 
This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
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