FAQ Iowa Eligibility Application Information

Children need healthy meals to learn. Waukee Community Schools offers healthy meals every school day. Breakfast costs $1.70 at the elementary schools and $1.80 at the secondary and high schools. Lunch costs $2.60 at the elementary schools, $2.70 for grades 6-9, $2.80 for grades 10-12 and $3.50 for adults. Your child(ren) may qualify for free meals or for reduced price meals. Reduced price is .30 for breakfast, .40 for lunch.

Iowa Eligibility FAQ (PDF)

Who can get free or reduced price meals?
Who can get free milk?
How do I know if my children qualify as homeless, migrant or runaway?
What if we have foster children?
Do I need to fill out an application for each child?
Should I fill out an application if I received a letter this school year saying my children are already approved for free meals?
Can I apply online?
My child’s application was approved last year, do I need to fill out a new one?
I get WIC. Can my children get free meals?
Will the information I give be checked?
If I don’t qualify now, may I apply later?
What if I disagree with the school’s decision about my application?
May I apply if someone in my household is not a U.S. citizen?
What if my income is not always the same?
What if some household members have no income to report?
We are in the military. Do we report our income differently?
My Family needs more help. Are there other programs we might apply?
Can children with disabilities get food substitutions?

If you have other questions or need help, call 515-987-2719.

FAQ

Who can get free or reduced price meals?

  • All children in households receiving benefits from Food Assistance, or the Family Investment Program (FIP), 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 at or below the limits on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines below. (Requires submitting an Application for Free and Reduced Price Meals/Milk.)
Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines for School Year 2016-17
Household Size

Reduced Price Meals

Yearly Monthly Twice a Month Every two weeks Weekly
1 21,978 1,832 916 846 423
2 29,637 2,470 1,235 1,140 570
3 37,296 3,108 1,554 1,435 718
4 44,955 3,747 1,874 1,730 865
5 52,614 4,385 2,193 2,024 1,012
6 60,273 5,023 2,512 2,319 1,160
7 67,951 5,663 2,832 2,614 1,307
8 75,647 6,304 3,152 2,910 1,455
For each
additional
family
member
add:
7,696 642 321 296 148

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Who can get free milk?
If your school participates in the Special Milk Program for half day kindergarteners, your kindergarten child may be eligible for free milk. Children who buy extra milk with a meal or if they eat breakfast or lunch and have an afternoon milk break, they are not eligible to receive free milk.
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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 Peg Erke, the homeless liaison/migrant coordinator, at 515-987-5161.
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What if we have foster children?
Households with foster and non-foster children may choose to include the foster child as a household member, as this may help other children in the household qualify for benefits. If the foster family is not eligible for free or reduced price meal benefits, that does not prevent a foster child from receiving free meal benefits.
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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. For questions contact:
Tarrah Retman
tretman@waukeeschools.org
515-987-2719
560 SE University Ave Waukee, IA 505263
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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: Tarrah Retman at 515-987-2719 immediately as eligibility for free meals is extended to all school age children in a household. If you did not receive a letter from the school, but received a Free Lunch Notice from DHS, submit this signed letter to: Tarrah Retman at 560 SE University Ave Waukee, IA 50263. You may add any students living in your household who are not listed.
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Can I apply online?
Yes. All applications will be processed online with the online registration process or at any time during the year. The online application has the same requirements and will ask you for the same information as the paper application. Visit https://schoolmealapp.com/Register.aspx to begin the online application process. Contact Tarrah Retman, 560 SE University Ave; Waukee, IA 52063, 515-987-2719 or tretman@waukeeschools.org if you have any questions about the online application
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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, through October 4, 2016. You must send in a new application unless the school told you that your child is eligible for the new school year. When the carry-over period ends, unless you are notified that your children will receive free meals, the children must pay full price for school meals.
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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 complete the application.
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Will the information I give be checked?
Yes. We may also ask you to send written proof of the household income you report. You are not required to provide proof with your application.
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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 or reduced price meals if the household income drops below the income limit, if your household size goes up, or if you start getting Food Assistance, FIP or other benefits.
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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: Lora Appenzeller-Miller (lappenzellermiller@waukeeschools.org); 560 SE University; Waukee, IA 50263; 515-987-5161.
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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, or receive Family Subsistence Supplemental Allowance payments, 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. There are currently no active Military Housing Projects in Iowa as found on Active Military Housing Projects. Any additional combat pay resulting from deployment is also excluded from income.
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My Family needs more help. Are there other programs we might apply?
To find out how to apply for Food Assistance or other assistance benefits, contact your local assistance office or call 1-877-347-5678. Your children may be eligible for hawk-i (children’s health insurance) or a waiver of school fees. Read the information on the back of the Application for hawk-i information. A school waiver form is available from your school, http://www.waukeeschools.org/students-and-parents/forms then choosing Fee Waiver Form.
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Can children with disabilities get food substitutions?
If a child has a disability, as determined by a licensed medical professional, and the disability prevents the child from eating the regular school meal, the school will make substitutions prescribed by the licensed medical professional. If a substitution is needed, there will be no extra charge for the meal. Please note, however, that the school is not required to make a substitution for a food allergy, unless it meets the definition of disability. Please call our department at 515-987-2719 for further information.
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If you have other questions or need help, call 515-987-2719.

560 Southeast University Avenue
Waukee, Iowa 50263
Phone 515.987.5161
Fax 515.987.2701