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Nationwide Waiver of Area Eligibility in the Afterschool Programs and for Family Day Care Home Providers in School Year 2021-2022

4/20/21

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Why It Matters: 

As providers continue to make heroic efforts through the pandemic to get meals to children.  Expanding access both helps families who continue to struggle with food insecurity and will support providers in getting nutritious meals to children while they continue to recover.  

Summary:

This nationwide waiver of area eligibility requirements provides improved access to nutrition meals and snacks for children by allowing State agencies to provide benefits to children who may be newly eligible due to the economic impacts of COVID-19.  It also eases the administrative burden for schools, community organization, and family day care homes to allow operators to implement safety measures such as social distancing so that all students may receive meals and safely reopen.   

This waiver allows schools, regardless of location to claim all afterschool snacks at the free rate.  It allows at-risk afterschool care centers, regardless of their location, to apply to participate in the CACFP and claim all meals and snacks at the free rate.  It also allows all day care homes, regardless of their location, to receive the Tier I reimbursement for all meals and snacks.  This waiver is effective July 1, 2021, and remains in effect through June 30, 2022 

This waiver applies automatically to all States that elect to use it, without further application.  If the State agency elects to implement this waiver, it must notify its respective FNS Regional Office, which will acknowledge receipt. State agencies should inform local Program operators of these flexibilities as quickly as possible.

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Q. Do sponsors have to determine Tier I status for homes care providers?
A. No.

Q. Do providers need to complete free and reduced eligibility forms?
A. No.

Q. Do At-Risk Sites have to take attendance?
A. Yes, but check with your state for flexibilities that might be in place.

Q. Do the waivers waiver enrichment for Afterschool At-Risk?
A. No, but you may continue to send home enrichment or offer virtual enrichment.