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Food and Nutrition Programs

Administrative Review Process

How are the National School Lunch Program requirements evaluated?

The Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act, as amended by the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA), require that participating SFA's comply with National School Lunch Program (NSLP) requirements. The Administrative Review (AR) provides a comprehensive evaluation of school meals programs completed by State Agencies.

What parts of program operations are evaluated during the Administrative Review?

The AR is comprised of five key compliance areas:

  • Meal Access & Reimbursement
  • Meal Pattern & Nutritional Quality
  • Resource Management
  • General Program Compliance
  • Other Federal Program Reviews
  • Procurement and Resource Management practices are also reviewed through a separate process.

A summary of the most recently conducted ARs is available to the public. Additional information about the AR Process in Massachusetts is available in a free interactive online learning module:

How often are districts evaluated?

The HHFKA, states that state agencies must conduct administrative reviews of all school food authorities (SFA's) participating in the NSLP (including the Afterschool Snacks and the Seamless Summer Option) and School Breakfast Program at least once during a 3-year review cycle.

The State Agency wishes to inform Child Nutrition Program (CNP) sponsors, site staff, and the public that the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has submitted a waiver to 7 CFR 210.18 to modify the existing 3-year AR Cycle to a 6-year cycle (through SY 2024-2025) under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). The waiver requests are available to the public below.

What SFAs are scheduled to be reviewed in this current six-year review cycle?

Can a district request to have certain required components waived?

The USDA has designed a process for State Agencies and eligible service providers to submit requests to waive requirements of CNPs Program requirements may be waived if the request would facilitate the State Agency or Service Provider to carry out the purpose of the program while remaining cost-neutral. This process is outlined fully in the memo, Child Nutrition Program Waiver Request Guidance and Protocol- Revised (SP 15-2018, CACFP 12-2018, SFSP 05-2018).

Last Updated: September 21, 2020

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