General Overview

The New York State (NYS) plan and program regulations were approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) as of May 2024 pursuant to the authority granted under Section 13(A) of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act, FNS is pleased to approve New York to administer Summer EBT in 2024 consistent with the enclosed plan and program regulations at 7 CFR Part 292.


New York State is implementing SEBT, a new federal program to help low-income households with children purchase food over the summer when school is out of session and children can no longer rely on access to free/reduced price school meals.


The Summer EBT benefit of $120 per eligible child will be issued on an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card that the family can use just like Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to purchase eligible food items at SNAP participating grocery stores, farmers markets, and other retailers. The new program is in addition to free meals that children ages 18 and younger can get at summer meal sites in their communities.


The New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) is working closely with the New York State Education Department (NYSED) on coordinated implementation of this program.


School student enrollment and demographic records reported to NYSED in the Student Information Repository System (SIRS) are used by OTDA to determine student eligibility, communicate to eligible families, and issue Summer EBT benefits.


Private, non-public schools that participate in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) but do not report student-level information for all their enrolled students in SIRS will upload student information to NYSED through a separate process.


Children are eligible for Summer EBT benefits if during the current school year they Received SNAP, Temporary (cash) Assistance (TA), Medicaid*, Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR) benefits; or were directly certified for free meals at their school; or Attend a NSLP participating school, and the household submitted an income form to their school during the 2023-24 school year that met income requirements for free/reduced price school meals; or Attend a NSLP participating school, and the household meets the income guidelines for free/reduced price meals but does not have an individual eligibility determination.


*Please note, limited to certain Medicaid eligible children that have income that is at or below 133% of poverty before the application of blocks, disregards, or exceptions.

Each student must be individually determined eligible for free/reduced-price meals to receive Summer EBT benefits.


A school’s participation in the Community Eligibility Provision of the NSLP to provide free school meals to all enrolled students cannot be used to establish eligibility for Summer EBT benefits.


For children who need to apply for SEBT benefits, they can apply and establish eligibility for the benefit at any time during the eligibility period. The eligibility period includes the full school year and the covered summer period that immediately follows that school year.