Meal Benefits Application (Portal)
PATH: Family > Applications/Forms > Meal Benefits Application
The Meal Benefits Application allows parents/guardians to electronically submit Meal Benefits Applications to their district.
In order to complete the Meal Benefits Application, the application signer must complete the following steps:
- Step 1. Register PIN Number/Electronic Signature
- Step 2. Review the Letter to Household
- Step 3. Review Application Instructions
- Step 4. Review and Confirm Signer
- Step 5. Confirm Household Members
- Step 6. Indicate SNAP, TANF or FDPIR Benefits
- Step 7. Confirm Student Household Members
- Step 8. Indicate Foster Children
- Step 9. Indicate Migrant, Homeless, Runaway, and Head Start Children
- Step 10. Enter Household Member Income
- Step 11. Review Household Information for Accuracy
- Step 12. Authorize Household Application
- Step 13. Electronically Sign the Household Application
- Step 14. Review and Print Submission Notice
Accessing the Meal Benefits Application
Step 1. Register PIN Number/Electronic Signature
In order to submit a legally-binding application to the district, an E-Signature PIN must be established. If you already have a PIN, skip to Step 2. The E-Signature PIN allows users to submit an electronic signature along with the application which is treated the same legally as a signature made on the paper application.
Notification of No E-Signature PIN Established
To create an E-Signature PIN, click the Yes button. The Create your PIN editor will display.
To create a PIN, enter the PIN, Re-enter the PIN, enter your current Campus account Password and select the Submit button. Your PIN is now saved within Campus and available for use with any documents or forms which require a PIN for signature or verification. To change you PIN, go to the Account Management tool.
Creating an E-Signature PIN
Step 2. Review the Letter to Household
The application signer must review the Letter to Household prior to beginning the application process. This letter contains important information and guidance about the online Meal Benefits Application.
After you review or print the letter for reference, click the Next button to review the application's instructions.
Letter to Household information and instructions can be modified in the Letter to Household template within the Online Application Editor (FRAM > Letter Editor, Online Application Editor).
Reviewing the Letter to Household
Step 3. Review Application Instructions
The application signer must also review the Application Instructions prior to beginning the application process. These instructions can also be printed and contain important information about the application process and submission.
After you review or print the Application Instructions for reference, click the Next button. The Signer Confirmation screen displays.
Application Instructions information can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor (FRAM > Letter Editor, Online Application Editor).
Reviewing the Application Instructions
Step 4. Review and Confirm Signer
Once both the Letter to Household and Application Instructions have been reviewed, the person completing the online application must confirm their identity as the application signer.
If the identity information is correct, select the Next button.
Signer Confirmation instructions can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor (FRAM > Letter Editor, Online Application Editor).
Verifying the Signer's Identity
Step 5. Confirm Household Members
The application signer must confirm all people living within their household.
Mark the checkbox next to the name of each person within your household. Once all members have been marked, select the Next button.
If a person is listed that should not be considered a household member, do not mark the checkbox next to their name. This does not remove them from the household within Campus, but does exclude them from the application.
In order to complete the remaining steps of the application process, it is critical Household members are identified.
Household Members information can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor.
Verifying Household Members
Adding a Household Member
If a household member does not appear in the list, you can manually add them. This often occurs when someone has just moved into the household or the person filling out the application does not have access to a specific family member within Portal.
The manually added student household member must exist in Campus at the time the FRAM Processor processes the application. If the manually added student member does not exist within Campus, the application cannot be processed and must be suspended if the district cannot confirm the validity of the student member.
- Click the Add Household Member button.
The Add Student/Non-Student Member editor displays.
Select whether the person is a Student or Non-Student and click the Save button.
A Student is a household member who will be enrolled in the district during the school year.
A Non-Student is any household member who will not be enrolled in the district during the school year.
The Add Student/Non-Student Member window displays.
Enter information about the household member in all required fields and select the Save icon. Required fields are denoted with a red asterisk.
The Household Members Confirmation screen displays. The added household member appears on the Household Members screen with the words (Manual Add) appearing after the person's name. To remove the person from the household, select the black X on the far right of the screen.
The School and Grade (and Student Number, if known) fields are important for application processing as the FRAM Processor uses these fields to better identify and match this student to records within Campus.
Once all household members have been identified, select the Next button.
Step 6. Indicate SNAP, TANF or FDPIR Benefits
Once household members have been identified, the application signer is asked whether any household members receive SNAP, TANF or FDPIR benefits.
Acronyms for SNAP, TANF and FDPIR are USDA-specific and can be changed to meet state-specific needs using the FRAM Preferences tool.
Identifying SNAP, TANF or FDPIR Benefits
|If household member(s)...||Then...|
|do NOT receive benefits||click No. You will be directed to the Students screen (see Step 7).|
|DO receive SNAP, TANF or FDPIR benefits|
click Yes. Select the household member's name and the benefit case number then click Next.
Step 7. Confirm Student Household Members
Now that household members have been established, students in the household must be identified. Mark the checkbox next to the name of each student household member then click Next.
Student Member information can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor.
Identifying Student Household Members
Step 8. Indicate Foster Children
Once student household members have been identified, the application signer must indicate whether any of the student household members are foster children.
Identifying Student Foster Children
|If a household member...||Then...|
|IS a foster child||click Yes. Mark the checkbox next to the name of each student household member that is a foster child, enter their Monthly Income and select the Next button.|
|is NOT a foster child||click No and.|
Selecting Foster Children
Step 9. Indicate Migrant, Homeless, Runaway, and Head Start Children
Once Foster students are identified, the application signer must indicate whether any of the student household members are Migrant, Homeless, Runaway, or Head Start children.
Prompt for Migrant, Homeless, Runaway, or Head Start Children
|If a household member...||Then...|
|IS a Migrant, Homeless, Runaway, or Head Start child|
click Yes. Select one of the following options from the Student Indicator dropdown for the appropriate student(s) then click Next:
Homeless, Runaway, Head Start, Migrant.
|is NOT a Migrant, Homeless, Runaway, or Head Start child||click No and.|
Step 10. Enter Household Member Income
Now that household members have been identified, income must be entered for each member.
Household Income Instructions information can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor.
Per USDA policy, income may only include whole dollar amounts.
you want to enter income information
indicate each household member's income by selecting the Add Income button and entering their income amount.
Mark the No Income checkbox for each household member that has no income.
Once all household member income has been entered, click Next.
|you do NOT want to |
enter income information
If income is not specified, you are certifying that you have no income to report. Your application will be processed as No Income and be approved for free benefits.
Indicating Household Member Income
Step 11. Review Household Information for Accuracy
Now that household members (and their benefits) have been identified, household information must be reviewed for accuracy.
The Total Income column lists the total amount of money each household member makes based on the frequency noted (i.e., monthly, yearly, etc). Frequencies listed in this column are automatically annualized across all members. The Total Household Income field indicates the total amount of income the household (all members included) earns per year. The Total Household Size indicates the total amount of members within the household.
Review all the information on the screen and if it is accurate, select the Next button. If this information is incorrect, select the Previous button to go back to the previous step and correct inaccurate information.
Review information can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor.
Reviewing Household Information for Accuracy
Step 12. Authorize Household Application
Now that all household information has been entered and confirmed as accurate, the household application must be authorized. Authorization is a four part process.
Authorization information can be modified in the Application Instructions template within the Online Application Editor.
Authorizing Sharing Information with Medicaid/SCHIP
The first step in the authorization process is to indicate whether you give your district permission to share your Medicaid or SCHIP information with Medicaid and SCHIP. Select the Yes or No radio buttons for each question shown in the image above.
Authorizing the Sharing of Information with Other Programs
If your district has created benefit permissions, you will be asked whether you consent to the district sharing your child's name and meal eligibility with each benefit program. Select the Yes or No radio button for each question shown in the Sharing Information with Other Programs section.
Entering Your Social Security Number
In order to verify stated household income, the last 4 digits of your Social Security Number must be entered. If you do not have a Social Security Number, mark the I do not have a SSN checkbox.
Reviewing the Authorization Statement
Review the Authorization Statement. If you agree with this statement, believe all entered information is accurate and would like to complete the application process, select the Accept button.
If you do not agree with the application and Authorization Statement, select the Decline button. If the Decline button is selected, a message will appear warning you the application process will be cancelled and all application information entered will be deleted.
Step 13. Electronically Sign the Household Application
If you do not want to electronically sign the application, select the Do not use E-Signature button. This action will cancel the application due to the need for the application to have a legally-binding electronic signature in order to meet state and federal guidelines
If you forgot your PIN, click the Forgot you PIN button. You will be redirected to the Reset your PIN editor where you can reset your PIN.
Resetting a Forgotten PIN
Step 14. Review and Print Submission Notice
The application has now been submitted to the district for processing.
Submission Notice information can be modified in the Submitted template within the Online Application Editor.
Application Submission Notice
You may print and/or save the Confirmation Submission Notice and the Benefits Application Summary Report for your records. You may also access this information in your Inbox.
Inbox Message Indicating Meal Benefits Application Submission
After the FRAM Processor has processed the application, you will receive an Inbox message indicating the application was processed. If your district has enabled the Include Approval/Denial Letter FRAM Preference, you will receive an Inbox message containing a PDF copy of your Approval/Denial Letter which indicates whether the application was approved or denied.