Arkansas Department of Education Documentation and Claiming of Pre-School Meals

Memo Information

Memo Number
FIN-15-097
Memo Date
3/18/2015
Memo Type
Informational
Section
Fiscal & Administrative Services
Regulatory Authority
§NA
Response Required
NO
Attention
Co-op Directors; Elementary Principals; Middle School Principals; High School Principals; Superintendents; Child Nutrition Director, Bookkeppers, Pre-School Program Directors

Contact Information

Memo Text

The purpose of this memo is to clarify responsibilities of educational cooperatives sponsoring preschool programs and school districts providing breakfast and lunch meal service to those students. The Department of Human Services (DHS), Special Nutrition Unit and the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE), Child Nutrition Unit (CNU) have jointly reviewed and agreed to the following procedures for implementation by district and educational cooperatives. The following identifies the responsibility for both the district and the educational cooperative in order for each institution to meet the administrative review and audit requirements for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs delivered to the students. DHS, Special Nutrition Unit can be reached by contacting Joy Nolan (501) 320-8998 (Joy.Nolan@Arkansas.gov), Blanca Hernandez at (501) 320-8937 (Blanca.Hernandez@Arkansas.gov), or Buster Lackey at (501) 320-8950 (William.Lackey@Arkansas.gov). School districts and educational cooperatives are encouraged to have a written agreement identifying the responsibilities of each and the services each will provide. If there are payments or exchange of funds between the institutions there must be a written agreement indicating the responsibilities of each and the services each will provide, including any associated expenses. This memo applies to the following situation:  The educational cooperative has enrolled preschool students that:     1) attend the educational program within school  district facilities,     2) are served lunch and breakfast at the district,      3) complete free and reduced meal benefit applications at the district, and     4) meals are claimed for reimbursement by the district on the district’s “Monthly Claim for Reimbursement” through ADE/CNU.  Preschool students often receive a mid-afternoon snack which is prepared and served at the district, but NOT reimbursable on the district’s “Monthly Claim for Reimbursement” through ADE/CNU. These snacks can be reimbursed though an Agreement between the district and DHS, Special Nutrition Unit under the CACFP (Child and Adult Care Food Program), or the school district may invoice the educational cooperative monthly for the snacks and the educational cooperative would have the Agreement with DHS, Special Nutrition Unit. NOTE: ADE/CNU can ONLY fund snacks served afterschool and there MUST be an educational component. The following identifies the responsibility for both the district child nutrition department and the educational cooperative preschool program in order for each institution to meet the administrative review and audit requirements for the USDA programs delivered to the students. 1)  The district will accept Free and Reduced Priced Meal Application for the preschool students. The district will process the applications and meet all the same standards for approval as the K-12 student applications. Pre-K students can be entered into eSchool when the district maintains meal applications and claims the student’s meals for reimbursement through ADE/CNU. 2)  The district child nutrition department will maintain the applications. The district will not copy applications and distribute to the educational cooperative. When needed DHS, Special Nutrition Unit will review the applications at the district during the site visit. 3)  The district will maintain a system to ensure that the preschool applications will be retrievable by school and other source documentation (i.e. direct certification lists, etc.) will be retrievable by preschool program. The district will be able to supply source documentation of eligibility status for preschool programs separately from K-12 source documentation. 4)  The district will receive administrative reviews for each USDA program operated by the state agency administering that program. (National School Lunch and School Breakfast by ADE/CNU and CACFP snack by DHS, Special Nutrition Unit) 5)  The district child nutrition department will provide all program supporting documentation to state agency reviewers to be reviewed within the district. 6)  The district child nutrition department must collect student payments for the paid and reduced meals served. That payment can be paid by parents directly into the food service account, by the district as a transfer into the food service account, or by the cooperative as a billed expense from the child nutrition department. a.   If the parents pay the paid eligible and reduced eligible student meal charges, the money must be deposited into the student account within the non-profit school foodservice account. b.   If the school district reimburses the child nutrition department for the paid and reduced student’s meal charges, the school district will be billed by the child nutrition department for those expenses.                                          i.   The district child nutrition department will maintain a daily count of meals served (at the point of service) by category (free, reduced and paid).                                        ii.   The district child nutrition department will use those daily counts of meals served to construct a monthly bill for the student payment portion of the meals.                                       iii.   The school district will transfer payment into the non-profit school food service account for the amount billed on a monthly basis. c.   If the district does not collect student payments from the paid and reduced eligible students, the education cooperative will be billed by the district child nutrition department for those expenses.                                          i.   The district child nutrition department will maintain a daily count of meals served (at the point of service) by category (free, reduced and paid).                                        ii.   The district child nutrition department will use those daily counts of meals served to construct a monthly bill for the student payment portion of the meals.                                       iii.   The education cooperative will pay the district child nutrition department for the amount billed on a monthly basis. 7)  If the district prepares and serves snacks DURING the school day for the preschool students: a.   The education cooperative preschool program must have a signed agreement in place with DHS, Special Nutrition Unit. b.   The district child nutrition department will maintain a daily count of the snacks prepared and served (at the point of service) by category (free, reduced and paid). c.   The district child nutrition department will use those daily counts of snacks prepared and served to construct the following:                                          i.   A monthly bill for the number of snacks prepared. The district child nutrition department will bill the education cooperative preschool program for the total number of snacks prepared multiplied by a price per snack previously agreed upon in writing by the district child nutrition department and the educational cooperative preschool program.                                        ii.   A monthly total of snacks served by category (free, reduced, paid). The district child nutrition department will provide a statement of the total number of free, reduced, and paid snacks served to the educational cooperative preschool program. The educational cooperative preschool program will use this total snacks served by category to complete the CACFP snack “Claim for Reimbursement” funded through DHS, Special Nutrition Unit. 1.   If the education cooperative in under an Agreement with CACFP for the snack program, DHS, Special Nutrition Unit staff will complete a serving site review including review of the eligibility applications (which must be retrievable by preschool).  2.   District child nutrition staff should expect the DHS, Special Nutrition Unit staff to review the same or similar things reviewed in the administrative review by ADE/CNU, including kitchen cleanliness, health inspections, menu, production records, applications, etc.   8)   If the district prepares and serves snacks AFTER school in an EDUCATIONAL program for the preschool students: a.   The district child nutrition department will maintain a daily count of snacks prepared and served by category. b.   The district child nutrition department will use those daily counts of snacks prepared and served to support the Claim for Reimbursement submitted to ADE/CNU. In short, if the district is serving and claiming for reimbursement the lunch and breakfast meals, the applications will be reviewed at the district child nutrition office. Applications will not be copied and distributed to educational cooperatives.     Where Are Records Maintained? Who Claims for Reimbursement?   District Child Nutrition Coop Preschool Program District Child Nutrition Coop Preschool Program National School Lunch prepared and served at Public School Facilities   X     X   School Breakfast prepared and served at Public School Facilities   X     X   Snack DURING the School Day prepared and served at Public School Facilities   X       X

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