The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced that 14 new states, including Ohio, have been selected to participate in the Direct Certification with Medicaid Demonstration Projects for the 2023-2024 school year. With the 2023-2024 addition, a total of 39 states are now eligible to participate. The demonstration of Direct Certification with Medicaid for Free and Reduced-Price Meals (DCM-F/PR) authorizes states and school districts to use information from Medicaid data to identify eligible students to receive free or reduced lunches. The program allows students to be certified for free or reduced meals without household applications. In the 2019-2020 school year more than 1.2 million students were certified for free meals, and 240,000 students were certified for reduced-price meals.

To learn more about the program visit the USDA website.

What this means for your District: School districts will want to be on the watch for information from the USDA in how the Medicaid system will “talk” to the USDA’s system for reporting students who are eligible for free or reduced-price meals.