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Provisions: Claiming Alternatives

School Nutrition Program Provisions 1, 2, 3, and the Community Eligibility Provision are alternative ways for local educational agencies to claim student meals.

Provisions are methods for reducing paperwork and other administrative burdens at the local level by simplifying the traditional operating procedures for meal eligibility and meal counting.

Schools must apply to participate in Provisions and receive approval from the California Department of Education prior to implementation. For forms and directions for use information, please visit the Provision Forms Web page.
Community Eligibility Provision

The Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) was implemented as a result of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. It is one of the federal provisions to increase access to the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program while decreasing administrative burden at the Local Educational Agency (LEA) level; specifically through an alternative method for claiming student meals in high poverty schools.

Provision 1

Provision 1 reduces application burdens by allowing schools where at least 80 percent of the children enrolled are eligible for free or reduced-price meals to certify children eligible for free meals for a two year period. Schools continue to take daily meal counts of the number of meals served to children by type as the basis for calculating reimbursement claims.

Provision 2

Provision 2 requires that the school serve meals to participating children at no charge but reduces application burdens to once every four years. It also simplifies meal counting and claiming procedures by allowing a school to receive meal reimbursement based on claiming percentages. Additional four-year extensions to Provision 2 are possible when certain conditions are met. For further guidance on Provision 2, see the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Provision 2 Guidance Manual External link opens in new window or tab. .

Provision 3

Provision 3 requires that the school serve meals to participating children at no charge but reduces application burdens and meal counting and claiming procedures. The Provision 3 base year immediately precedes, and is not included in, the four-year cycle.

Adjustments may be made to meals claimed based on enrollment, inflation, and operating days. Base year meals can be served at no charge or charged based on eligibility. Meals served during the four-year cycle are served to all students at no cost.  Additional four-year extensions to Provision 3 are possible when certain conditions are met.

The federal regulations for Provisions are found in Title 7, Code of Federal Regulations  Section 245, Determining Eligibility for Free and Reduced Price Meals and Free Milk in Schools.

For information on Provisions 1, 2, and 3, visit the USDA School Meals Provisions 1, 2, and 3 External link opens in new window or tab. Web page.

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Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
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