Food and Nutrition Programs

After-School Snack Program

After School Snack Program Grant - Fund Code: 529

After School Snack Program Q & A

  1. What are "After-School Snacks?"
    The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) now offers cash reimbursement to help schools and after-school care programs serve snacks to children after their regular school day ends. Afterschool snacks give children a nutritional boost and draw them into supervised activities that are safe, fun and filled with learning opportunities.

  2. How can children benefit from the snack service?
    Afterschool snacks help ensure that children receive the nutrition they need to learn, play and grow. Organized, structured, and supervised programs that provide snacks allow children to think and behave better, and help them make the grade!

  3. Is my after-school care program eligible?
    In order for a site to participate, your school district must run the NSLP. In order for a CACFP site to participate, your program must be "area eligible" (see Question 6). Additionally the afterschool care program must provide children with regularly scheduled educational or enrichment activities in a supervised environment. Contact your State education agency for further information regarding program eligibility.

  4. How do schools get reimbursed for meals?
    In order to be reimbursed, the snacks must contain at least two different components of the following four: a serving of fluid milk; a serving of meat or meat alternate; a serving of vegetable(s) or fruit(s) or full strength vegetable or fruit juice; a serving of whole grain or enriched bread and/or cereal. 

  5. How much money will my school get for serving snacks?
    Reimbursement rates are available at CACFP 2017-2018 Reimbursement Rates.

  6. How is "area eligible" defined?
    An afterschool care program site is "area eligible" if it is located at a school or in the attendance area of a school where at least 50 percent of the enrolled children are eligible for free or reduced price meals. For example, if a high school with less than 50 percent free or reduced price school enrollment is located in the attendance area of a middle school that has 50 percent or more of the enrolled children eligible for free or reduced price meals, then the afterschool care program located in the high school would be area eligible. Afterschool care programs can use free and reduced price meal data from elementary, middle, and high schools to document a site as "area eligible".

  7. If my site is not area eligible, must I take applications for individual students to determine whether they are eligible for free or reduced price benefits?
    Since your school district is already participating in the NSLP, it will have free and reduced price applications on file. The eligibility determinations for those applications would apply for both the lunch and snack service under the NSLP. If an approved free or reduced price application is not on file, the school district will earn the paid rate of reimbursement for snacks served to that student unless the student makes application and is approved for free or reduced price benefits.

  8. How do I apply for after-school snacks?
    Contact the school food service director in your school district. You may also want to contact the Massachusetts State Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Nutrition Programs and Services at (781) 338 - 6480 for more information. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service home page has additional information regarding the After-School Snack Program.

  9. When does the reimbursement begin?
    As soon as the State agency approves your application, reimbursement will be earned for snacks served. Reimbursement will be provided to participating programs who serve afterschool snacks to children and youth through the age of 18. Please contact your State agency to determine if you are eligible to receive retroactive reimbursement.

  10. What records must be maintained (for CACFP)?
    Your State agency will provide you with specific information on the reporting and recordkeeping requirements. You will need to maintain a roster or sign-in sheet for participating children. Additionally, you must record and report the total number of snacks you serve each day, and document compliance with the meal pattern for CACFP. Your State agency will be able to provide you with a copy of the CACFP meal pattern.

  11. Can I receive reimbursement during the summer months (CACFP)?
    You may only receive reimbursement for afterschool snacks served in CACFP during times of the year when school is in session. However, your program may be able to participate in our Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) during the summer months, and receive reimbursement for providing nutritious meals and snacks to children and youth in your program. Your State agency can also provide you with information on participating in the SFSP this summer.

Available Resource

School Meals - Child Nutrition Programs

Last Updated: March 8, 2016

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

Voice: (781) 338-3000
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