Children need healthy meals to learn. Aldine ISD offers healthy meals every school day. During the 2021-2022 school year, meals will be provided at no cost to all students due to USDA provisions. It is still important to apply for meal benefits 1) to ensure that your household qualifies for P-EBT funds if they become available again, 2) to allow for meal status eligibility carryover the following school year, and 3) so that the district receives funding. This packet includes instructions to apply for free or reduced-price meal benefits. Paper applications are available at the Aldine ISD Child Nutrition office, but the quickest way to apply is online at: www.SchoolCafe.com

Below are some common questions and answers to help you with the application process.

  1. Who can get free or reduced price meals?
    1. All children in households receiving benefits from SNAP, FDPIR, or TANF, are eligible for free meals.
    2. Foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals.
    3. Children participating in their school’s Head Start program are eligible for free meals.
    4. Children who meet the definition of homeless, runaway, or migrant are eligible for free meals.
    5. Children may receive free or reduced price meals if your household’s income is within the limits on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. Your children may qualify for free or reduced-price meals if your household income falls at or below the limits on this chart.
  2. 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: Efrain Uribe, School Homeless Liaison/Migrant Coordinator, 2520 WW Thorne Dr., Houston, TX 77073, (281) 985-6425.
  3. My child’s application was approved last year. Do I need to fill out a new one? Your child’s application is only good for that school year. You must send in a new application unless the school told you that your child is eligible for the new school year. 
  4. If I don’t qualify now, may I apply later? Apply at any time during the school year. A child with a parent or guardian who becomes unemployed may become eligible for free and reduced-price meals if the household income drops below the income limit.
  5. What if my income is not always the same? List the amount normally If a household member lost a job or had hours/wages reduced, use current income.
  6. We are in the military. Do we report our income differently? Basic pay and cash bonuses must be reported as income. Any cash value allowances for off-base housing, food, or clothing, or Family Subsistence Supplemental Allowance payments count as income. If housing is part of the Military Housing Privatization Initiative, do not include your housing allowance as income. Any additional combat pay resulting from deployment is excluded from income.
  7. May I apply if someone in my household is not a U.S. citizen? You, your children, or other household members do not have to be U.S. citizens to apply for free or reduced-price meals.
  8. Will application information be checked? We may also ask you to send written proof of the reported household income.
  9. My family needs more help. Are there other programs we might apply for? To find out how to apply for other benefits, contact your local assistance office or 2-1-1.
  10. Do I need to complete an application for each child? 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.
  11. Should I complete 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 Aldine Child Nutrition Services at (281) 985-6441

If you have other questions or need help, call Customer Accounts at (281) 985-6441.

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: https://www.usda.gov/oascr/how-to-file-a-program-discrimination-complaint, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter 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; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: program.intake@usda.gov. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.