Coloradans with school-enrolled children will receive food benefits through the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) program. This effort will help support Colorado’s families during the COVID-19 pandemic.
More than 360,000 Colorado children are eligible for P-EBT benefits, which will reimburse families for the free and reduced-price meals that students missed while schools were closed in March, April, and May because of COVID-19.
Families who participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (also known as SNAP, or food stamps), and whose children attend a school that participates in the National School Lunch Program, had benefits automatically loaded onto their EBT cards between July 22 and July 31. Eligible families who have not received an automatic payment will need to apply for P-EBT funds.
Benefits are calculated in the amount of $5.70 per student per day of school closure. Households with students who are already enrolled in FRLP will receive a lump sum of $279 per eligible child (49 days of closure at $5.70 a day). A child newly eligible but not previously enrolled will receive the appropriate amount for the days they are determined eligible for P-EBT.
Eligible families include those with children in preschool, Early Childhood Education (ECE), and pre-K through grade 12 who are enrolled in a school that participates in the NSLP. This includes public, private, and charter schools. Students who attend some online schools are also eligible, as are special needs students aged 18 to 22.
Some families may need to apply for P-EBT benefits, and the application is available on the CDHS website. Those instances can include:
P-EBT was created under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201) as an important opportunity to provide nutritional resources to families who are losing or lost access to free or reduced-priced school meals as schools across Colorado closed in response to COVID-19.
More information including FAQs can be found at www.colorado.gov/cdhs/p-ebt.