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 Administrative Update: A Publication of Child Nutrition and Food Distribution
 

In this Issue

November 2011

Verification Summary due December 15, Can be Completed Now  

Direct Certification Update

Direct Deposit

USDA Rural Development’s Community Facilities Program Grant

Summer Food Service

Announcing SFSP Story & Photo Contest Winners: "Food, Fun and Sun!"

Verification To Be Completed By November 15

Water is Required to be Available Where School Lunch is Served

Zero or One is the ONLY Way

October Claims for Reimbursement

Verification Summary due December 15, Can be Completed Now  

Now would be a great time to complete the Verification Summary Form SFN 54196. You should have most of the numbers necessary to complete the form. The top boxes of the verification summary ask for how many new applications you had as of October 1 and how many were selected for verification. The number of eligible students will come from your October claim.

Only count free students in one place. If students are on the Direct Certification SNAP list and the family submits an application, count them as SNAP list in 4-1 and place the application form in an inactive file. USDA judges our paperwork reduction efforts on how many students we are matching with SNAP list Direct Certification instead of requiring paper applications.

Separate the applications into free and reduced piles to come up with the numbers in the middle section.

#4 is total number of free eligible students on the October claim.

#4-1 is the number of students on the Direct Certification SNAP list, homeless students, migrant students and RCCI students.

#4-2 is free students on applications with a SNAP case number; 4-2B is the number of application forms on which these students are listed.

#4-3 is free students on an application with income; #4-3B is the number of application forms on which these students are listed.

#5 is reduced price students; #5B is the number of application forms on which these students are listed.

The bottom section should have very small numbers. This is where you report what happened with the applications you verified. If you verified two and they did not change, under #7 No Change, you will record 2 in number of applications and then how many students were on those two applications.  

This form seems to cause quite a bit of confusion. If you would like assistance in filling it out, call Deb Egeland toll free at 888-338-3663 or 328-3718 or call Cathy Deics at 328-2664. Please have your applications in piles and counted before you call.

This is a link to the Verification Summary Form, the last item on the page, click on Word Format if you want to type in the form.

http://www.dpi.state.nd.us/child/snp/tools/index.shtm

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Direct Certification Update

Recently, USDA released a Report to Congress regarding Direct Certification implementation during SY 10-11.  In the report, North Dakota was noted as one of the states with the greatest improvement in identifying students eligible for free school meals through direct certification.  Much of this success can be attributed to our new Direct Certification system.  Here are some reminders for Direct Certification Users:

Matched Notifications:
After clicking on Matched Notifications, the user must click on search to view their list.  If it is anticipated that the list will be long, be sure to enter at least one search criteria, such as the plant, or the first letter of the last name. 

Notifications Lists:
The system is designed to continuously update the direct certification matches and possible matches for the district.  If the user receives an e-mail message that a match or possible match has been added to the notification lists, he/she should go into the Direct Certification system and “Enroll” or “Not Enroll” the names on the lists.  Make sure you check both lists. 

Direct Certification Contacts:
We are able to change the names of the persons at the district who receive the Direct Certification notifications.  Please contact Carla Wardzinski in our office if changes/additions should be made.

Trainings:
Three Direct Certification training sessions were conducted in Fargo and Grand Forks in October. Additional trainings will be provided in Bismarck, Minot, Jamestown and Dickinson in November and December. The intended audience for the training is School Nutrition Program Authorized Representatives, Recordkeepers and other local Direct Certification users.  Mileage reimbursement is available for out-of-town attendees!

The training schedule is listed below.  To register for training e-mail Carla Wardzinski at cwardzinski@nd.gov 

Bismarck
Nov. 21st - 2:00 – 4 pm
State Capitol Building
600 East Boulevard Ave.
Brynhild Haugland Room

Minot
Dec. 8th - 2:00 – 4 pm
International Inn
1505 North Broadway  

Jamestown
Dec. 13th - 2:00 – 4 pm
Holiday Inn Express-
803 20th St SW

Dickinson
Dec15th - 2:00 – 4 pm
Holiday Inn Express-
103 14th Street West  

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Direct Deposit

All local agencies are encouraged to sign up for direct deposit, reducing the wait for funds to arrive by check in the mail.

Some great reasons to have your reimbursement check direct deposited include:

  1. Child Nutrition program reimbursement is deposited into your bank account 2-3  working days after the payments are processed. A check takes 5 to 6 working days to reach you through the mail. Your money available to you 3 days earlier when utilizing direct deposit.
  2. No more worries about losing the check in the mail.
  3. Cut down on trips to the bank.
  4. The new state accounting system allows you to have different bank accounts for each type of payment that is received.

When the payment has been made, our office sends out an email informing you that payments have been processed and the reimbursement will be in your bank account in 2-3 working days. This email also contains a link which will take you into the FNP system where you are able to bring up the most recent transmittal report on your screen.  This is the same report that is currently sent with your check. From this screen you can see how much your payment is and even print the transmittal for your records.

Please call or email Carla at the Child Nutrition Office (1-888-338-3663) for the direct deposit form.

Please consider signing up now!

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USDA Rural Development’s Community Facilities Program Grant

The Community Facilities (CF) Program supports the success of rural communities by providing loans and grants for construction, acquisition, or renovation of community facilities or for the purchase of equipment for community projects. Furthermore, these facilities can improve access to high-quality and affordable local foods.

The CF program finances many types of facilities and equipment that facilitate distribution and marketing of local foods. Projects that support local and regional food systems that may qualify for CF funding include, but are not limited to the following,

Farmers markets
Community kitchens and food distribution centers
Facilities and equipment used by not-for-profit food distribution networks
School cafeteria renovation and equipment
Community food banks

Who is Eligible
Local governments, non-profit organizations and state and federally-recognized Indian tribes are all eligible to apply. Applications must be for projects in rural areas (defined as areas with no more than 20,000 residents).

Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and are subject to funds availability. For more detailed information and to apply go to the website, http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/HAD-CF_Grants.html

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Summer Food Service Program

North Dakota needs additional Summer Food Service Program sponsors to provide meals for kids when school is out.  Contact Kaye Knudson (ksknudson@nd.gov) for more information.  NOW is a great time to make plans for summer 2012!

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Announcing SFSP Story & Photo Contest Winners:

"Food, Fun and Sun!"

WASHINGTON, Oct. 5, 2011 – Today, USDA's Food and Nutrition Service announced the winners of the first ever Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) "Food, Fun and Sun!"Story and Photo contest to highlight how the program provides free, healthy meals to children in low-income areas during the summer. Launched earlier in the summer, USDA received over 100 submissions representing sponsors and sites in over forty states. Check out the winners and their innovative ideas

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Verification To Be Completed By November 15

Verification is the process of documenting the income reported on 3 percent of the approved free and reduced applications.

  • First, calculate how many new applications you have received this year from July 1 to October 1. This is your “number of approved application forms.” Only count real applications, not names on the direct certification list, migrants, or homeless designations.
  • Take the number of applications and multiply it by .03; this is the number of applications you are required to verify. Round up any fractions. For example, 50 applications multiplied by .03 equal 1.5.  Round up to two applications. You need to choose two applications that are close to the income guidelines (within $100 a month) to verify.

We have a form letter on our web site that you can use to contact the families selected for verification: http://www.dpi.state.nd.us/child/snp/tools/vletter.pdf

Please use the latest, 2011, version of this letter. The revised letter reflects our new regulation to not require the social security numbers of all adults in the household.

Verification consists of asking for and examining check stubs for wages, taxes for farming or business income, and copies of checks or court orders for child support. The check stubs can be from anytime in August, September, October or November. Families that write in food stamps (SNAP) or TANF case number can be verified by calling the county social service office and asking if the family is eligible for SNAP or TANF. If the documentation provided matches what was reported, the family stays free or reduced, whatever the original determination. If the documentation changes their status, the family has 10 days to provide other documentation before they can be changed to reduced-price or paid status. If the family was determined reduced and should have been free, the change needs to be made within three days.

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Water is Required to be Available Where School Lunch is Served 

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (the Act), Public Law 111-296, established a requirement for making water available to children in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). 

The Act requires schools participating in the NSLP to make water available to children at no charge in the place where lunch meals are served during the meal service.  There are a variety of ways that schools can implement this requirement.  For example, schools can offer water pitchers and cups on lunch tables, a water fountain, or a faucet that allows students to fill their own bottles or cups with drinking water.  If discipline problems are a concern, the water pitcher and cups can be kept on the serving line. Whatever solution is chosen, the water must be available without restriction in the location where meals are served.  The student needs to be able to take the water to their table to drink with the meal.

While water is required to be made available to students, it is not considered part of the reimbursable meal and students are not required to take water.  There is no separate funding available for this provision and reimbursement may not be claimed.  However, reasonable costs associated with providing water would be an allowable cost to the non-profit food service account.  

We understand that some food service areas and/or procedures may require significant changes to properly incorporate this provision.  The easiest solution is still providing a pitcher of water and cups on the serving line.

If you have any questions about this new requirement, please contact Deb Egeland at degeland@nd.gov or 1-888-338-3663 or 701-328-3718 or Cathy Deics at cdeics@nd.gov or 328-2664 or Stacie Morowski at smorowski@nd.gov or 1-888-788-8901.

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Zero or One is the ONLY Way!

Reducing the total fat and saturated fat intake of children is a national health priority. One simple strategy for incorporating this recommendation from the 2010 Dietary Guidelines is for ALL Americans ages two and older to enjoy skim or 1% milk on a daily basis.

Why? Whole and 2% milk and milk products (ice cream, cheese, yogurt) are a leading source of artery-clogging saturated fat, a MAJOR contributor to heart disease, the number one cause of death in the United States.

One cup of 2% milk has as much heart-unhealthy fat as 3 strips of bacon!

Children who drink 1 cup of 1% milk instead of 2% milk during the school day would cut almost 19 pounds of fat from their diet during their 13 years of school.

The bottom line? Choosing 1% or skim milk is one of the easiest ways for children to get the calcium and vitamin D they need, while reducing their saturated fat intake and heart disease risk.

The current USDA School Lunch Program regulation concerning this issue states:  Schools or institutions must offer only pasteurized fluid unflavored or flavored fat free or low-fat (1%) fluid milk. (Section 202 of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010). The proposed meal pattern for next fall requires that all flavored milk be fat free.

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October Claims for Reimbursement

Our office is requesting that schools complete the October claims for reimbursement as quickly as possible. October claim numbers determine the school’s free and reduced eligibility for the new school year. This information is used by agencies to determine your school’s funding allocation. We receive many requests for this information from agencies writing grants on behalf of schools.

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In accordance with Federal Law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability.

To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call toll free (866) 632-9992 (Voice).  Individuals who are hearing impaired or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339; or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish).   USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

 

 

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North Dakota Department of Public Instruction
Kirsten Baesler, State Superintendent
600 E. Boulevard Avenue, Dept. 201
Bismarck, North Dakota 58505-0440
701/328-2260

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