Students from families whose income is below designated levels and foster children are eligible for free meals or meals at a reduced rate. The Lunch Cashier System allows the Lawrence Public Schools’ food service department to manage the application process and establish student accounts accordingly in compliance with federal regulations.
To determine if a family qualifies, the family must complete an application. One application per family is necessary and may be completed any time during the year. If a family participated in this program in the past, a new application must be completed each year.
Parents/guardians are responsible for ALL CHARGES until the application has been APPROVED by the food services office.
Children eligible for free or reduced-price Child Nutrition Program meal benefits may also qualify for optional benefits.
The application may be downloaded from our Web site at the top of this page.
Applications will be available at the office of each school at enrollment time or by contacting the food services office at 110 McDonald Drive, Lawrence, KS 66044-1063 or by phoning 832-5000.The application information is kept confidential.
Free and Reduced FAQs
1. Do I need to complete an application for each child?
No. Complete one application for all students in your household. We cannot approve an application that is not complete, so be sure to complete all required information. Return the completed application to: Food Services Office, 110 McDonald Drive, Lawrence, KS 66044.
2. Who may receive free meals?
Your child may receive free meals if your household income is within the free limits on the Federal Income Guidelines. Also, free meals are available to most foster children and to children in households receiving benefits from Food Stamps, Temporary Assistance to Families (TAF), or the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR).
3. Can homeless, runaway and migrant children receive free meals?
If you have not been informed that your child will receive free meals, please call Ron May, Lawrence Public Schools’ homeless liaison, at 832-5000.
4. I received a letter saying my children are approved for free meals for this school year. Should I fill out an application?
Please carefully read the letter you received and follow the instructions. Call the school at the number listed above if you have questions.
5. Who may receive reduced-price meals?
Your child may receive low-cost meals if your household income is within the reduced-price limits on the Federal Income Chart on the reverse side of the approval letter.
6. I receive WIC (Women, Infants and Children) benefits. May my child get free meals?
Children in households participating in WIC may be eligible for reduced price or free meals. Please complete an application.
7. Will the information I give be checked?
Yes, we may ask you to send written proof of the information you provide on your application.
8. If I don’t qualify now, may I apply later?
You may apply at any time during the school year if your household size goes up, income goes down, or if you start getting Food Stamps, TAF or other benefits. If you lose your job, your child may be able to receive reduced-price or free meals.
9. What if I disagree with the school’s decision about my application?
You should talk to a school official. You also may ask for a hearing by calling or writing to:
Paula Murrish, Division Director of Food Services & Purchasing, 110 McDonald Drive, Lawrence, KS 6604, (785) 832-5000.
10. May I apply if someone in my household is not a U.S. citizen?
You or your child do not have to be a U.S. citizen to qualify your child to receive reduced price or free meals.
11. Who should I include as members of my household?
Include yourself, all children who live with you and all other people living in your household, related or not (such as grandparents, other relatives, or friends).
12. What if my income is not always the same?
List the amount that you normally receive BEFORE deductions. For example, if you normally receive $1,000 each month, but you missed some work last month and only earned $900, list that you earn $1,000 per month. If you are normally paid for overtime, include it.
13. I have been approved for reduced-price or free Child Nutrition Program benefits, why am I still being charged for other school fees like the instructional material fee or textbook rental?
School fees are not automatically waived. Before the Food Services Department can share your Child Nutrition Program benefits with the Business Office they need permission from you to do so. The Federal Government (USDA) requires a “Waiver of Confidentiality” be on file each school year granting permission to share Child Nutrition Benefits for other reasons, for the children listed on the form. Once permission is granted, the Business Office can review and grant waivers for applicable fees.