|Written by jaredsgirl|
Single parents with children struggle enough to pay bills and make ends meet without having to dish out $1.50 or more a day for their child's lunch. This expense can get costly when your salary is at a minimum. But, there is help in the school system for your child to get a free or reduced lunch that the government helps pay for.
Your child may even qualify for free breakfast at school in the morning if you are a single working parent. Here are some tips for getting free or reduced lunches for your child at school and ease one more cost as a single parent.
1. All schools in the United States are required to offer single working families and those of low income a chance to get free or reduced meals for their children. In order to find out if you qualify, go to your child's school office and tell them that you'd like to apply for the reduced lunch program for your child. The office workers will give you a form to take home and fill out. Many times, schools automatically mail out the reduced lunch application home to parents. You may find that your child brings one home for you.
2. Fill out the application for free or reduced school lunches by following all the directions. You will need to know your family size, family income, grade of your child, your child's basic school information, and teacher's name. Make a copy of the application for yourself when completed. Take the application for free or reduced school lunches into your child's school office or send to school with your child in a folder or envelope marked with his teacher's name.
3. You will find out in a week or so if your child is approved for free or reduced school lunches and if you will have to pay any amount for his lunches. Your child will either get a card to swipe at lunch or a list will be generated with his name on it that tells cafeteria workers that he is to get a free or reduced lunch.
There is no embarrassment to your child because the free or reduced lunch program is confidential and no other children will know he receives it, unless of course, your child tells them. If your child is approved for the free or reduced lunch program, he will receive free or reduced lunches for that whole school year. You will need to reapply to the program each new school year.
Tips & Warnings:
1. Be sure to be honest about your income on the free or reduced school lunches application...the limit for receiving help is actually quit high.
2. Talk to your child ahead of time about the program so he understands it and knows what to expect at lunch time.
3. Don't send money to school to be put in your child's lunch account if you are receiving free lunches for your child, the school is not allowed to use it for him once you're approved.