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Details on P-EBT for the 2020-2021 school year are forthcoming.

P-EBT provides food benefits to children who are certified for free or reduced-price school meals and are learning remotely.

New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (NYSOTDA) and New York State Education Department (NYSED) are working to finalize New York State’s plan, and will provide additional information, including details on which students will be eligible, and how and when benefits will be issued, when it becomes available.

Please note that the upcoming round of benefits for the 2020-2021 school year is separate from the first round of P-EBT, which covered the 2019-2020 school year. This distinction may cause confusion, as some families received the first round of benefits recently, or are still working to resolve issues with last school year’s benefits.

In the meantime, schools can act now to prepare for this new round of P-EBT benefits.

Schools can act now to ensure P-EBT reaches all eligible children:

ALL schools

  • Encourage families to:
    • Keep their mailing address updated with the school to ensure they receive any mailings from NYS OTDA, which will rely on this information.
    • Keep their P-EBT card if they received one during the first round of P-EBT.

Non-CEP (Community Eligibility Provision) schools

  • Encourage newly eligible families to apply for free or reduced-price school meals. This includes families who did not receive P-EBT for the 2019-2020 school year, but may be eligible now, such as families who lost income, and new Pre-K, Kindergarten, or transfer students.
    • Eligibility will carry over for children who received P-EBT last year; however, more families may be eligible now. These families can only receive P-EBT if they are certified for F/RP school meals.
    • Many schools are providing free meals to all with federal waivers this school year. Please assure families that applying for F/RP meals will not affect their access to those free meals.
    • Children who automatically qualify for free school meals based on their participation in programs like SNAP do not need to submit a F/RP school meals application.

Remind Families:

P-EBT does not take the place of school meals or other federal nutrition programs, including SNAP, WIC, summer meals, or meals in child care and afterschool programs.

Immigration status does not matter for P-EBT. Receiving or using P-EBT does not affect immigration status. The public charge test does not apply to P-EBT.

There is no application for P-EBT. Children who are certified for free or reduced-price meals and are learning remotely will receive benefits automatically. This includes all students learning remotely in CEP schools.

As trusted messengers, school leaders can communicate these messages to families with details that are specific to their school community. As you may be aware, the first round of benefits caused confusion with families which generated many calls to school districts. We have developed the following resources to help mitigate confusion for families and set school districts up for success.

Outreach & Communications Resources for Schools

To help with clear and concise communication to families we have developed templates you can customize and share:

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