Families can apply for benefits to help cover food costs from Sept. 2020 through May 2021


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Families who have children who qualify for free or reduced-price meals can again apply for Pandemic-Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) start today, according to the Department of Social Services.

P-EBT is a temporary benefit for kids who are eligible for free or reduced lunch but didn’t receive meals at school daycare due to closure, hybrid or virtual learning, according to the DSS.

The benefit is to help cover food costs from Sept. 2020 through May 2021.

Though there are some changes to last year’s program:

  • All families must apply to get the P-EBT benefit even if they do or don’t receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  • A child may be eligible for these benefits if the school was closed, not doing in-seat learning or had reduced hours at least five school days in a row due to COVID-19.
  • The P-EBT benefit is based on the school’s report of how much of the month was not in-seat learning.

To apply for the P-EBT program you can download the application here.

Families will then need to email or mail the application to the Family Support division by July 31, 2021.

Each eligible student gets a card with their name with a lump sum for the school year.

Ineligible families will receive a denial letter.

For families who have children under 6-years-old, you will not need to apply for if you receive SNAP will automatically get a P-EBT benefit.

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