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Recent updates to free and reduced-price eligible meals


As of Oct. 3, Ohio law requires that all School Food Authorities (SFAs) no longer collect any breakfast or lunch meal money from children who qualify for reduced-price meals. The State of Ohio is reimbursing schools 30 cents for each reduced breakfast meal and 40 cents for each reduced lunch meal served. Schools on traditional methodology still must determine applications as free, reduced or paid and count and claim students as free, reduced or paid meals served. The reimbursement process will be automatic with claims submission starting in the school year 2024-2025.

For the school year 2023-2024 only, the process for reimbursing schools is as follows.

  • On Oct. 27, the Office of Nutrition sent an upfront reimbursement to schools based on 60% of total reduced-price breakfast and total reduced-price lunch meals served in school year 2022-2023. To view the disbursement in the Claims Reimbursement and Reporting System (CRRS), look under “Payment Summary” in the “Claims” module. The entry will indicate “state match.” Please allow 10 business days for the payment to be processed.
  • After all school year 2023-2024 claims are in, the Office of Nutrition will reconcile actual reduced breakfast meals and reduced lunch meals served and pay SFAs for the difference. The payment deposit should indicate reduced-price funding and is credited to the nonprofit food service account under CFDA 10.555 until final reconciliation is completed in September 2024.

Note that schools on Community Eligibility Provision are not eligible for this reimbursement as they do not count and claim reduced-price meals. Schools on Provision 2 are eligible for the reduced-price meal reimbursement. 

Schools that are serving reduced-price meals must update CRRS site applications to reflect “reduced charge waived.” No applications should show 30 cents at breakfast and 40 cents at lunch collected from students qualifying for reduced price meals. If a school’s SFA has collected reduced-price breakfast and lunch meal money from students after Oct. 3, the SFA must refund this money to the households.

Contact the Department with any questions at 614-466-2945 or