1. What is P-EBT and Summer P-EBT?

P-EBT is a new federal nutrition program that provides a small grocery benefit for families to purchase food. P-EBT was first available in 2020 for families with school-aged children, and the benefits were extended in 2021 to include some families with young children (ages 0-6) as well. A similar benefit, called Summer P-EBT will be issued in September 2021 to all eligible children in Maine.

2. How do P-EBT and Summer P-EBT work?

Each eligible child receives $6.82 for each school day in which in-person learning was impacted due to the pandemic during the 2020-2021 school year. The total benefit will vary with a maximum benefit of about $34 per child, per week. Summer P-EBT benefits will average $375 per child for the full break and will be issued in September 2021 retroactively.

3. Who qualifies for P-EBT & Summer P-EBT?

P-EBT is for students who qualify for free or reduced-priced school meals, including all students attending a school using options like the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) to offer universal free school meals. A student must also be in a school whose predominant learning model was virtual or a hybrid model due to pandemic-related school closures or schedule changes. In the 2020-2021 school year, most children under the age of six in families participating in SNAP/Food Supplement are also eligible for P-EBT benefits if nearby schools are virtual or hybrid. All children under the age of six enrolled in SNAP and school-aged students enrolled in free or reduced-priced school meals may also be eligible for Summer P-EBT. CLICK HERE to see eligibility guidelines.

4. How do families receive P-EBT and Summer P-EBT benefits?

Most eligible children receive P-EBT benefits automatically. Students must be enrolled in free and reduced-price school meals and/or enrolled in SNAP. Young children are eligible if they are in families with SNAP. Text the word food to 74544 to find out if you may also be eligible for SNAP.

5. Do families need to apply for P-EBT and Summer P-EBT benefits?

While P-EBT benefits are automatically provided to most eligible children, it is important for families with school-aged children to complete a school meal benefit application for each school year and to make sure the school has the correct mailing address.

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