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Updates on Face Coverings, Meal Programs, and PPE Request

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Dear District Administrator,

This email contains a frequently asked questions document on cloth face coverings, an update on collecting free and reduced price meal information, and requests regarding personal protective equipment (PPE) and information on school reopening plans.

Cloth Face Coverings

The Department of Health Services (DHS) released Cloth Face Coverings in Schools: Frequently Asked Questions and Considerations for Use. This document is also posted on the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) website and can be accessed through the COVID-19 web page.

Collecting Free and Reduced Price Meal Information for School Year 2020-21

As school districts are making decisions regarding which U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) meal program to utilize this school year, please note that no matter what program you decide on your school district will need to continue to collect Free and Reduced Price Household Meal Applications OR Alternate Household Income Forms (for Community Eligibility Provision schools and districts), determine eligibility, extend benefits, run Direct Certification, and complete Verification. This is to ensure you have the information needed for the change over to the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs when USDA funding ends and for individual student data reporting purposes.

Request to Help Distribute PPE

The Department of Children and Families (DCF) and the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) are asking for help from school districts in distributing supplies to early care and education community partners. By filling out this short survey, districts can indicate their ability to participate in this effort. Many early care and education programs across the state have remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to meet the needs of working families. This effort will ensure child care programs can remain open and operate safely, and to help temporarily closed programs with a successful reopening. Boxed, bundled, and labeled supplies will be delivered to school districts who choose to participate so they can be picked up by child care programs. School districts who participate will determine the location and time for child care programs to pick up their supplies. If you have questions, please reach out to Thomas McCarthy at DCF.

Request for School Reopening Information

If you have not already done so, please fill out this DPI survey regarding your board’s approved reopening plan. This should take only a few minutes to complete. The survey will remain open through September. DPI will be publishing the results on the department’s website and using them to better focus services to you.

If you have questions, please email the DPI at