Food and Nutrition

DC Public Schools is committed to supporting the health and achievements of our students by ensuring all learners receive nutritious meals. For School Year 2023-2024, breakfast will remain free for all DCPS students.  

Lunch will be free for any student who qualifies for free or reduced-price meals, and for all students who attend a Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) school. *  

If your student does not attend a CEP School, they may be able to receive free lunch through one of the following ways: 

  1. By qualifying for Direct Certification: 
  • Students who are in a household that receives benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).  
  • Students who are foster children and are the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or the court, or are homeless, migrant, categorically eligible, or runaway. 
  1. By completing a Free and Reduced-Priced Meal (FARM) application and being eligible based on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. Families must submit a new FARM application every school year. 

For students who do not qualify for free and reduced-price meals, lunch will remain $3.00.   

Visit for more about student meals and food and nutrition at school.  

*CEP Schools are determined under the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). 

Page updated: September 13, 2023