STRATFORD, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — According to the Stratford Independent School District (ISD), the application process for free and reduced-price school meals will be required again for the district.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Stratford ISD detailed that Congress authorized spending which allowed schools to serve free meals for all students. The funds will not continue for the 2022-2023 school year and therefore Stratford ISD said that it will charge for school meals and will offer free and reduced-price meals based on student eligibility.

Beginning on Aug. 1, Stratford ISD announced it will begin distributing letters and applications to eligible households in the district. Families were asked by Stratford to fill out the application for free and reduced-price meals and return the completed form online or at your school’s office.

Stratford ISD released the criteria for determining if a child will be eligible for free and reduced-price meal benefits:

  • Household income that is at or below the income eligibility levels;
  • Household is receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) Program Participant Eligibility;
  • Child’s status as a foster child, homeless, runaway, migrant, or displaced by a declared disaster;
  • Child’s enrollment in Head Start or Even Start Income Eligibility.

The following information will be required for households that qualify for the benefits based on income:

  • Names of all household members;
  • Amount, frequency, and source of current income for each household member;
  • Last four digits of the Social Security number of the adult household member who signs the application;
  • Signature of an adult household member attesting that the information provided is correct.

Stratford ISD noted that applications for income-based qualifications must be returned to Tina Brooks, School Child Nutrition Director at 503 N 8th in Stratford. If an individual did not receive a letter and thinks they qualify or wishes to decline benefits can contact Brooks at 806-366-3310.

Stratford ISD advised individuals to notify their school if a household member becomes unemployed or if the household size increases as this may change their eligibility for the program.

To determine if your household qualifies for student food benefits, check out the Square Meals website.