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2024–25 Breakfast and Summer Grant Instructions

Instructions for California's School Breakfast Program and Summer Meal Program start-up and expansion grants.

School food authorities (SFA) can submit the 2024–25 School Breakfast Program (SBP) and Summer Meal Programs (SMP) Start-up and Expansion Grant, known as the Breakfast Grant (BG), application found online on the California Department of Education (CDE) BG Request for Applications (RFA) web page. Complete the application and have the appropriate agency official electronically sign and submit it. The CDE must receive your SFA’s online submission no later than 4 p.m. on Friday, March 1, 2024. No late or mailed applications will be accepted.

The CDE will award competitive grants of up to $15,000 per site. Each SFA may apply for no more than 10 sites. Recipients will receive 90 percent of the funding at the time of award with the remaining 10 percent awarded upon approval of all invoices.

Steps to Apply for the 2024–25 BG

  • Carefully review the Application Scoring Criteria on the CDE BG web page.
  • Read the Instructions for Completing the BG Application (this document).
  • Complete and submit the online Grant Application no later than 4 p.m. on Friday, March 1, 2024.

Request for Applications

School Food Authority Information

Note: You will need to select the Save Responses button on each page of the Request for Applications (RFA) to save the application. Once you select the Save Responses button you will receive an email with a unique URL (web address) for entrance back into the application. It is recommended that you copy the URL on the application page and save it in case you do not receive the confirmation email. This address will allow you to return to your place in the survey at any time if the Save Responses button was selected prior to exiting.

Application Field Explanation

Name of SFA

Select the name of your school district, county office of education, or direct-funded charter school.

Mailing address of SFA

Enter the mailing address, city, state, and zip code for the SFA.


Select the county in which your SFA conducts business.

SFA Child Nutrition Information and Payment System (CNIPS) Identification (ID) Number

Enter the CNIPS ID number associated with your agreement with the CDE to participate in Child Nutrition Programs (CNP).

SFA Vendor number

Enter the CDE vendor number assigned to your SFA.

Total number of sites for which the SFA is applying (no more than 10)

Select the total number of sites for which your SFA is applying for grant funds. Please note that there is a limit of 10 sites per SFA that may receive a grant.

Name of food service director (FSD)

Enter the name of the FSD. If you do not have an FSD, provide the name of the employee who will be the contact person for this grant.

Phone number of FSD

Enter the phone number of the FSD or appropriate staff, including extension.

Email address of FSD

Enter the email address of the FSD or appropriate staff.

Name of superintendent/director/administrator

Enter the name of your organization’s superintendent/director/administrator.

Email address of superintendent/director/ administrator

Enter the email address of your organization’s superintendent/director/administrator.

Is the SFA’s local board approval required before accepting this grant? If yes, is a copy of the board approval enclosed?

Select Yes or No for each question, as appropriate, and email any required documentation to by July 1, 2023.

SFA cafeteria fund balance as of July 1, 2023

Enter the balance of your cafeteria account as of
July 1, 2023.

One month’s average food service operating expense

Enter the amount your SFA spends (on average) in one month on food service. This includes salaries, food, laundry, utilities, janitorial, etc.

Net cash resources (NCR)

This answer is auto calculated. No entry required.

Please note that SFAs with excess NCR may be ineligible for a grant.

Excess NCR explanation

If your SFA has excess NCR, explain in detail why the excess NCR cannot be used in lieu of grant funds. SFAs with excess NCR may be ineligible to be awarded a grant.

List by source and amount any public or private donations or other funding that you will receive to support the start-up or expansion of the SBP or SMP.

List any funding (other than state or federal funding) that you receive to support either program. If no additional funding will be available, enter None.

Does the SFA plan to provide additional financial support?

Select Yes or No.

Special Funding Amount

If applicable, enter the amount of additional funding that your SFA will contribute to your SBP or SMP. Do not include funding that is used for routine and necessary expenses. Financial support from the cafeteria fund is not considered special funding.

What is the source of the additional financial support (excluding the cafeteria fund)?

Select either General Fund or other. If other, please explain.

Describe how the SFA intends to use the additional financial support.

If applicable, indicate how your SFA will benefit from the additional financial support.

Does the SFA plan to provide additional nonmonetary assistance (e.g., training for Breakfast in the Classroom [BIC])?

If yes, list any additional nonmonetary special assistance support your SFA intends to contribute, including food service training, services, or outreach.

Describe the additional assistance and how it supports the start-up or expansion of the SBP or SMP.

If applicable, describe the additional assistance and how it supports the start-up or expansion of the SBP or SMP.

Do you assure that the expenditure of funds from any state and local resources, for the maintenance of the SBP or the SMP, shall not be diminished as a result of this grant award funding?

Select Yes or No.

Describe any barriers preventing the SFA from increasing meal participation, how the SFA will overcome the barriers, and how this grant will assist in doing so. 

List any barriers to increasing SBP or SMP participation, how the SFA will overcome them, and how the grant will assist. Barriers may also include lack of adequate equipment for meal service during disaster.

Site Information

Complete this section for each site for which you are applying for grant funds. You may save your responses at any time by selecting the Save Responses button.

Application Field Explanation

Name of Site

List the name of the school site for which you are applying.


For each site application, enter the site number assigned in your CNIPS account, not the SFA CNIPS ID number. The site number can be found to the left of the site name in your CNIPS account listing of participating sites.

Which type of grant are you applying for at this site?

Select only one of the four boxes, as appropriate.

Do you assure that the site will operate the SBP or SMP for no less than three years?

Select Yes or No.

Is this site the central kitchen or food processing plant for your SFA?

Select the Yes or No box, as applicable.

If yes, is this site also a school where children attend transitional kindergarten through grade twelve?

Important: the central kitchen must be located at a school site in order to be eligible for a grant. If this is a central kitchen that is not located at a school where children attend transitional kindergarten through grade twelve classes, the site is ineligible for a grant.

Select the Yes or No box, as applicable.

Enter the number of students at this site approved for the following eligibility categories as of the last operating day of October 2023.

Enter the number of students eligible for free and reduced-price (F/RP) meals and the total site enrollment.

Enter the total number of lunches served at this site during School Year (SY) 2021–22 in the following eligibility categories (do not provide percentages). If your school did not participate during SY 2021–22, provide the number of lunches served during the first three claim months of the current school year.

Enter the number of lunches served to students who qualified for:

  • Free meals
  • Reduced-price meals
  • Paid meals

Do not provide percentages.

Approved F/RP percentage. This is the site percentage of F/RP eligible students.

This answer is auto calculated. No entry is required.

Percentage of F/RP lunches served

This answer is auto calculated. No entry is required.

Select and describe the innovative strategies that this site will implement or expand in an effort to start an SBP or SMP or to expand meal and program participation, or serve meals during disaster.

For this site, select all innovative strategies proposed for SBP and SMP, and add other and describe as needed.

Describe how you will implement and operate the innovative strategy or strategies indicated above. Include specific information such as location of Grab-and-Go Breakfast carts, etc. Also, explain how your agency’s administration supports implementation or expansion of your innovative strategy or strategies.

Describe how you will implement and operate the innovative strategies selected above.

Budget Sheet

Upload your completed Budget Sheet into the grant application. Instructions on completing the Budget Sheet are on the first tab of the Excel spreadsheet.


Enter the Superintendent's (or highest ranking district or agency official’s) name to certify that all the information contained within all sections of the application is correct and that your SFA will observe all applicable state and federal procurement laws and regulations. The official certifying the information should be listed as a contact in the sponsor application in CNIPS.

Use of Grant Funds

The CDE will authorize purchases for allowable costs as long as SFAs dedicate their use exclusively to food service and the equipment serves to assist in the start-up or expansion of an SBP or SMP. Conversely, any equipment that will be used by another program and not operated exclusively by food service, and will not assist in the start-up or expansion of an SBP or SMP, is not an allowable expense. For example, if the SFA purchases a vehicle that will be used by food service to transport food items or meals, but it is also used for nonfood service activities, the cost of the vehicle is not an allowable purchase with these grant funds.

The CDE will not pay SFAs for services or equipment without a copy of the vendor’s invoice or receipt. An invoice has a unique invoice number on it and is signed by an SFA representative per their procurement policies. Purchase orders and packing lists may not be used in lieu of invoices or receipts.

SFAs must incur all allowable expenses within the designated grant period. The official grant period is included on the signed grant award notice.

SFAs must follow all state and local procurement standards.

Allowable Costs

Allowable costs are nonrecurring expenses used when starting up or expanding an SBP or SMP and include:

  • Food service equipment purchases for program start-up or expansion; for example, an SFA may use awarded funds to upgrade its stove if the current stove is too small to adequately heat food or meals to serve its students.

  • Supplies or equipment needed to offer fresh fruits and vegetables or meet the requirements of the U.S. Department of Agriculture school meal pattern; for example, fruit bars, smoothie machines, blenders, fruit baskets, additional food storage, fruit and vegetable washers, etc.

  • Food service training costs related to new SBP activities; for example, vendor charges for point-of-sale (POS) software, vending machine training, and training for meal service during disaster.

  • Outreach costs; for example– banners, paper, envelopes, and postage for flyers, or newspaper or television ads announcing the SBP or SMP.

  • Incidental equipment installation costs in accordance with California Education Code Section 38091.

  • Computer POS systems used exclusively for food service; for example, a computer and software for each POS, printer(s), and site license. However, the renewal of a POS license is not an allowable expense.

  • Grab-and-Go equipment costs used to create remote feeding sites or areas on campus; for example, carts or kiosks, as well as one-time wiring to accommodate a POS system.

  • Vending machine costs that provide breakfast items for middle and high school levels only. Allowable vending machines must be equipped to dispense reimbursable meals, conduct POS meal counts, prevent students from obtaining more than one reimbursable breakfast or lunch per day, and be solely used in the CNPs. Please note that while vending machines equipped to dispense reimbursable meals may be allowable purchases for middle and high school grades, the CDE does not consider their use an innovative strategy.

  • Costs for vehicles that transport food or meals to and from sites and are used solely for food services; for example, vehicle modifications that are needed for temperature control, storage, etc., are allowable expenses.

  • Barbeque grill costs that are incurred for use at outdoor SMP sites.

  • Food trucks for use at SMP sites. However, the cost of food trucks must be prorated among all sites that will use or benefit from the food truck, including sites not requesting grant funds.

Unallowable Costs

Unallowable costs are recurring expenses or costs for equipment or services that are not used exclusively for the start-up or expansion of an SBP or SMP and include:

  • Salaries and benefits, travel costs, subscriptions, and membership and conference fees

  • Fees for required training and process certifications, such as ServSafe

  • Capital outlay for building walls, rooms, or flooring, and capital expenditures that increase the useful life or value of a facility

  • Equipment that will be used by other programs (i.e., equipment that SFAs will not dedicate exclusively to food services)

  • Office equipment and supplies such as desks, chairs, staples, pens, pencils, paper clips, writing tablets, etc.

  • Food and menus

  • Costumes, promotional giveaways, prizes, T-shirts, etc.

  • Uniforms for staff

  • Disposable supplies such as paper towels, cleaning products, etc.

  • Computers that are not part of a POS system
  • Indirect costs

  • Recurring costs—agencies should bill only once for materials associated with ongoing activities such as letters, flyers, etc.

  • Travel-related expenses such as lodging, meals, mileage, etc. for vendors—even if the costs are associated with training

Funds provided under this grant, may not be used for the following purpose:

Travel to states identified pursuant to Government Code Section 11139.8, including as of the release of this RFA; Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia. For more information, please visit The Office of the Attorney General's web page External link opens in new window or tab..

The CDE will evaluate miscellaneous kitchen supply requests on a case-by-case basis to determine if they actually contribute to or accommodate an increase in participation. Items such as can openers, knives, cutting boards, oven mitts, floor mats, etc., generally do not meet the intent of the grant for starting up or expanding an SBP or SMP.

The cost of equipment for central kitchens or kitchens that prepare meals for other kitchens, including food transport vehicles, must be prorated among all sites that will use or benefit from the equipment or vehicle, including sites not requesting grant funds.

Note: The CDE reserves the right to deny any expenditure that is not allowable or is inappropriate under this grant, even though the CDE may have initially approved the expenditure based on preliminary information provided in the application.

All purchases made under these grants are the property of the SFA and must be returned to the SFA if the site for which the equipment was purchased is no longer participating in the CNPs under the SFA’s agreement.

Terminating Awards

If a grant is awarded based on information in the application and the recipient subsequently changes the plan and requests equipment unrelated to the original plan described in the application, the CDE may terminate the grant. Examples of changes that would result in the loss of grant funds are if an SFA:

  • Requests funds for transport bags to provide BIC, then after the award, requests a salad bar instead of transport bags.

  • Requests to purchase a cart to serve breakfast in the area where students arrive at school, and then requests to replace a broken refrigerator instead of purchasing the cart.

  • States a site will implement BIC, and then does not do so.


Please read the entire General Assurances document located on the CDE Funding Forms web page.

Drug-free Workplace

All SFAs participating in any of the CNPs have signed a Permanent Single Agreement (PSA), and by doing so, have agreed to all terms and conditions listed in the document. On page 10 of the PSA, the section titled, Certification Regarding State and Federal Drug-free Workplace Requirements states that applicants certify to provide a drug-free workplace. No further action is required.

Certifications Regarding Debarment, Suspension, and Lobbying

SFAs are prohibited from contracting with a vendor that has been debarred, proposed for debarment, or suspended. SFAs must require any potential vendor to include a certification statement with each bid of $25,000 or more. The bidder certifies that neither it nor any of its key employees have been proposed for debarment, debarred, or suspended by a federal agency. The SFA should retain bidder certifications with bid responses. Suspension and Debarment Certification can be found on the CDE Procurement in CNPs web page.

Application Scoring Criteria

2024–25 Breakfast and Summer Program Grants Scoring Criteria

Appeals Process

Applicants that wish to appeal a grant award decision can view the Nutrition Services Division appeals process on the Appeal Process for 2024–25 SBP and SMP Grants web page.

Good Standing

If an agency is currently participating in any of the federal CNPs, they must be in good standing in the operation of those programs administered by the CDE and in compliance with all related regulations during the application process and anytime during the course of the grant period. The criteria that the CDE considers in determining an agency’s Good Standing status can be viewed on the Good Standing Status for 2024–25 SBP/SMP Grants web page.

Grant Application Submission

The CDE will only accept online applications. All applications are due by 4 p.m. Friday, March 1, 2024.

Questions:   Breakfast Grant Team |
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, January 3, 2024
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