Arkansas Department of Education Division of Elementary and Secondary Education Changes in Verification for 2018

Memo Information

Memo Number
CNU-19-016
Memo Date
9/17/2018
Memo Type
Informational
Unit
Child Nutrition
Regulatory Authority
7 CFR 245.6a(c)(1); Section 9(b)(3)
Response Required
NO
Attention
Superintendents; Child Nutrition Directors/Managers

Primary Contact Information

Secondary Contact/s Information

Memo Reference

No references available.

Memo Text

ATTENTION: SUPERINTENDENTS, CHILD NUTRITION DIRECTORS, VERIFICATION OFFICIALS

 

 

Section 9(b)(3) of the National School Lunch Act (NSLA) and regulations at 7CFR 245.6a(c)(1) established requirements for Local Education Agencies (LEAs) in conducting verification of eligibility for free and reduced price meals.  Verification is required when eligibility is determined through the application process.

 

Beginning with SY 2018-2019 districts are required to request and receive State Agency approval to perform an alternative verification sampling method.  If a district chooses to use an alternative sampling method, the attached form must be completed and emailed to ade.chnutverify@arkansas.gov no later than Friday, September 21, 2018.  Districts will be notified of their status by the end of the day on Monday, October 1, 2018. 

 

Any district not applying for approval to use an alternative sampling method will be required to use the Standard Sampling Method.

 

A description of each of the three (3) methods of verification is listed below.

 

Standard Sample Size:

 

  • Three percent of all applications approved by the LEA for the school year, as of October 1 of the school year, selected from the error prone applications; or
  • 3000 error prone applications approved by the LEA for the school year, as of October 1 of the school year.

 

Alternate Sample Sizes Available to Qualified LEAs [7 CFR 245.6a(c)(4)]

 

Alternate I – Sample size equals the lesser of

  •  Three percent of all applications approved by the LEA for the school year, as of October 1, selected at random; or
  • 3,000 applications approved by the LEA for the school year, as of October 1, selected at random.

Alternate II – Sample size equals the lesser of the sum of either:

  •  1,000 of all applications approved by the LEA, as of October 1, selected from error prone applications; or
  • One percent of all applications approved by the LEA, as of October 1, selected from error prone applications; PLUS
  • 500 applications approved by the LEA, as of October 1, which provide case numbers in lieu of income information; or
  • One-half of one percent (0.05 %) of applications approved by the LEA, as of October 1, that provide case numbers in lieu of income information. 

 

Qualifying to Use an Alternate Sample Size:

 

There are two ways an LEA may annually qualify to use an alternate sample size based on lowered non-response rates.

 

  • Decreased Verification Non-Response Rate [7 CFR 245.6a(d)(2)]: Any LEA may use an alternate sample size for any school year when its verification non-response rate for the preceding school year was less than 20 percent.
  • For example, if in SY 2017-18 the LEA’s verification non-response rate was 18%, then for SY 2018-2019 the LEA could request to use an alternate sample size.
  •  Improved Verification Non-Response Rate [7 CFR 245.6a(d)(3)]: An LEA with more than 20,000 children approved by application as eligible, as of October 1 of the school year, may use an alternate sample size for any school year when its verification non-response rate for the preceding school year was at least 10 percent below the non-response rate for the second preceding school year.
Additional information on the sampling methods may be found in the Eligibility Manual for School Meals Determining and Verifying Eligibility located on the ADE CNU webpage.

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