Application to participate in the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) must be completed through the annual School Nutrition Program (SNP) application renewal process via the Cyber-Linked Interactive Child Nutrition System (CLiCS). The application process for CEP must be completed by June 30 of each year.
To participate in CEP, an individual school site, cluster of schools or district must have at least 40 percent of their students qualify for free meals without a traditional paper free or reduced-priced meal application. This is called the “identified student” rate. “Identified students” include those students on the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE)-Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) direct certification list, and students who are homeless, runaway, migrant, participate in the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) or have Head Start status. CEP schools must participate in both the breakfast and lunch programs.
There is a two-step process for CEP enrollment:
CEP Site Enrollment and Identified Student Worksheet
The CEP Site Enrollment and Identified Student Worksheet indicates which school sites will be participating, and if the sites are participating on a district, individual or group basis. Begin the CEP enrollment process by completing this form. Directions for completing the site enrollment worksheet are included at the bottom of the worksheet.
Calculating Identified Student Percentage
The “identified student” percentage on the site enrollment worksheet is calculated by dividing the number of “identified students” by the number of enrolled students who have access to the school lunch or breakfast programs. The number of “identified students” could be for a single school site or for a group of schools within a district.
CLiCS Site Application
On the CLiCS site application, the intent to participate in CEP will be indicated below number one, National School Lunch Program. Select the radio button “Community Eligibility Program.”
Additional fields will then come in to view. In order to complete these fields on the site application, LEAs must use the CEP Site Enrollment and Identified Student Worksheet data.
You must also select CEP for item number two, School Breakfast Program. CEP schools must participate in both breakfast and lunch. An error message will occur if you choose CEP for either breakfast or lunch, and not both. Severe need breakfast data will populate if applicable.
Lastly, be sure to save the data on the site application. The “Save” button is located at the bottom of the site application.
Download, Review, Sign and Return
After the site and sponsor applications are complete, the final steps in applying for CEP are to review the CEP Local Educational Agency Agreement and CEP Site Enrollment and Identified Student Worksheet, sign the agreement form, scan and return the two pages to MDE-FNS by fax (651-582-8501) or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org by June 30, 2014.
Contact MDE-FNS at 651-582-8526 or 800-366-8922 (Minnesota toll-free) if you have questions about CEP or the school meal programs in general.