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Pat Birkenshaw State Director Child Nutrition Programs.

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Presentation on theme: "Pat Birkenshaw State Director Child Nutrition Programs."— Presentation transcript:

1 Pat Birkenshaw State Director Child Nutrition Programs

2 P.L , Section 104 Effective Dates Vary Direct Certification Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005

3  Process that allows local education agencies to certify children who are members of households receiving Food Stamps or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) as eligible for FREE school meals without further application.  Intent of Direct Certification is to facilitate participation in school meals programs by simplifying access to free meals for low- income children. Direct Certification Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005

4  Research continues to show that Direct Certification accurately brings more children into the school meals programs.  Direct Certification has been optional for all schools participating in federal school meals programs since Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 Direct Certification

5 Direct Certification is no longer optional! Direct Certification must be implemented by all public and non-public sponsors of the National School Lunch Program according to the following time table: Mandated Direct Certification Goes Into Effect In For School Districts with Enrollments of At LeastIn School Year July ,000 students July ,000 students July 2008 and thereafter All Public and non- Public NSLP Sponsors Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005

6  PDE mails the confidentiality statement to school districts, via PEARS, for Superintendents’ signatures. School districts choosing to participate in Direct Certification return the signed confidentiality statements to the PDE.  In the first or second week of August, the PDE receives an electronic file from the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) with the names of children from families receiving Food Stamp or TANF benefits during the month of July, sorted by school district zip code. Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 How Direct Certification Currently Works in Pennsylvania

7  PDE sends the electronic file to our Bureau of Information Systems (BIS), who then provides copies of Direct Certification lists, by school district, in hard copy, floppy disks, or CD’s, as requested by individual school districts.  PDE then mails Direct Certification lists to school districts in the requested formats. Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 How Direct Certification Currently Works in Pennsylvania

8  School districts continue to complain that Direct Certification lists from the PDE are received too late.  School districts need lists by the first or second week in August to prepare notifications to families that they do not need to complete income eligibility applications based on their categorical eligibility for Food Stamps or TANF. Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 Current Challenges with Direct Certification in Pennsylvania

9  Students appearing on Direct Certification lists may be enrolled in a neighboring school district.  All students from the same family may not be included on Direct Certification lists. Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 Current Challenges with Direct Certification in Pennsylvania

10  With the permission of USDA, DPW will now provide PDE with June rather than July Food Stamp and TANF participation data.  Direct Certification lists should be mailed to school districts by August 10th. Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 PDE’s Response to these Challenges for School Year

11  The challenge of students appearing on the Direct Certification lists, who are not enrolled in the requesting school district, may continue.  The challenge of all students from the same family, not appearing on Direct Certification lists, may continue. Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 PDE’s Response to these Challenges for School Year

12 Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 PDE’s Mid to Long-Term Response to Direct Certification Challenges COMPASS

13 Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005  Provides opportunities for Pennsylvanians to apply for a wide variety of social programs including healthcare coverage, foods stamps and cash assistance (TANF) online.  Provides opportunity for the PA Department of Education to include the income eligibility application for free and reduced price meals in COMPASS.  Provides opportunity for families to apply for school meals benefits online in COMPASS. COMPASS

14 Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005  Schools will be able to access COMPASS for free and reduced meals income eligibility applications.  Schools will be able to access COMPASS for direct certification lists.  Schools will be able to access COMPASS to verify applications with food stamp or TANF case numbers.  Schools will be able to print out applications, direct certification lists, etc. Why COMPASS Will Benefit Sponsors of the National School Lunch Program

15 Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 Timeline for Adding Free & Reduced Applications to COMPASS School Year : PDE is working in partnership with the Department of Public Welfare, Deloitte Consulting and five school food service directors to develop method for schools to access COMPASS. ▫Carol Gilbert, Hempfield S.D. ▫Candy Hartranft, Conrad Weiser Area S.D. ▫Joanne Kinsey, Allentown City S.D. ▫David Lloyd, Harrisburg City S.D. ▫Ann Ziobrowski, Chambersburg Area S.D.

16 Changes in Child Nutrition Program Law and Regulations Pennsylvania Department of Education, June 2005 Timeline for Adding Free & Reduced Applications to COMPASS School Year :  Ten to 15 school districts will be asked to pilot COMPASS;  Based on feedback, required changes will be made; and  Training will be provided as necessary. School Year :  All public and private school sponsors of the National School Lunch Program will utilize COMPASS for direct certification and verification purposes.


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