Direct Certification is a technique
or process for determining student eligibility for free or reduced-price
schoolmeals automatically through data exchange with the SNAP/Food Stamp
Program, the TANF Program, Medicaid, and Foster Child Data. When a student is
Directly Certified, the student's family need not complete the traditional
application for free or reduced-price meals. This saves parents and school
administrators time, and provides a uniform and efficient method for
In today's Child Nutrition Programs,
there are other advantages for effectively utilizing Direct Certification, the
most important being the new Community Eligibility Program. Schools are
strongly encouraged to utilize Direct Certification as early as possible in the
summer, preceding the start of school. Students should be Directly Certified
prior to the distribution of applications if possible. USDA Regulations require
that Direct Certification be completed at a minimum of three times a year. The
Indiana Department of Education strongly encourages and facilitates the use of
these methods continually throughout the school year.
School Year 2018-2019 Direct
We have made a few
changes that we hope will make this portal more convenient to use.
New and All Matches in .CSV format can now be download directly
from the Blue Direct Certification Page. You
don't need to go to the next screen.
That complete download
page is there still though if you click More
Download Options. .XML and .TXT formats for New and All lists, as well as NO COUNTY MATCHES, and UNMATCHED
SIBLING Lists, can be found here.
The Lookup Process is essentially the same,
although we have simplified the display and show only the current status. The monthly history grid was confusing to
many. First and Last Names, Date of
Birth, and Eligibility are seen directly in the search list. To aid in further narrowing down your search
you can view address and parent/guardian information by clicking on the + sign on the left. The Print
function remains the same, allowing you to print a record for your files of any
The Medicaid Pilot
remains in effect, as last year.
Program Assistance Code Eligibility
SNAP (Food Stamps) "F" Free
TANF "A" Free
FosterChild "W" Free
Medicaid (Free) "M" Free
Medicaid (Reduced) "R" Reduced
complexity into school enrollment processes. While data may show that a student
can be directly certified for Reduced Price meals based on Medicaid Data that
does not mean that the family may not still be able to prove Free Lunch
Eligibility based on Family size and income data submitted by a conventional
application. For that reason, parents should be notified that they can either
accept the Reduced-Price eligibility through Direct Certification, or submit an
application. Additionally, if a family has already been approved for Free Meals
by application, a Direct Certification result of Reduced should never be the
basis for taking away the Free Meal eligibility. Our website has new parent
letters for Direct Certification that handle these situations.
Please contact our
office if you have remaining questions.
Direct Verification is a special
process that may be used to expedite the Verification of a sample of
Applications during the October 1-November 15 time frame. It is a specialized
process that should be utilized ONLY within that context and should not be used
to establish eligibility. As such, it is not available for use except during
the October-December time period each year.
of these processes should be used within the context of the School
Voucher/Indiana Choice Scholarships Program. There are other systems on the
Application Center to facilitate eligibility for these benefits.