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August 27, 2020
National School Lunch Program Summer Meals Program
Program Spotlight

USDA Q&A for Child Nutrition Programs

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a Q&A for Child Nutrition Programs during school year 2020-21. The Q&A covers additional guidance on schools reopening, NSLP/SBP meal patterns and potable water, after-school snack program and unanticipated school closures. 

Q&A highlights:

  • Non-congregate feeding requirements:  USDA provided clarification on if it is required to serve students who are completing remote learning. Per the guidance, if the sponsor is using flexibilities within the Nationwide Waiver to Allow Non-congregate Feeding (Extension #2) at any site, then meals must be offered to every enrolled student whether they attend in-person or remote learning. For example: 

  1. If the sponsor is offering meals via grab and go, meal delivery via mobile or bus routes, drive thru or multiple meal distribution to take home, then the sponsor is using the flexibilities in the waiver and must offer meals to all students. 

  2. If the sponsor is offering a combination of non-congregate and congregate meal service models, then the sponsor is using the flexibilities in the waiver and must offer meals to all students.

  3. If the sponsor is only offering meals to be consumed on the school campus in a congregate setting (e.g. cafeteria, common areas, classrooms, outside and on campus, etc.) the sponsor is not required to offer meals to students completing remote learning. It is encouraged to offer meals to all students, regardless of the learning model. 

If sponsors are not planning to use the waiver and operating as described in No. 3 above, complete this online form. For questions, contact Kerri Link at or 720-660-5499.

  • Unanticipated School Closure in SY 2020-21: If individual schools and/or a school district must close and instruction will not be provided, this would be considered an unanticipated school closure. For example, school closed due to a wildfire and instruction will not be provided to children remotely or in-person, this is considered an unanticipated school closure. If the school building is closed but children receive remote instruction, this would not be considered an unanticipated school closure.

For questions, contact McKenna Pullen at or 720-644-7259. 

Program Updates

Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Operations for SY 2020-21 during COVID-19

The USDA issued SP 23-2020, allowing flexibility for sites approved to operate the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) during the  2020-21 school year. The FFVP may be served at the same time as meals but must remain separate and not replace a component of the meal. FFVP can be served in a non-congregate setting in conjunction with the FFVP Parent Pick Up Waiver and the FFVP Alternate Location Waiver.

For questions, contact Erica Boyd at or 720-693-3232.

Program Outreach and Partner Updates

CDE School Nutrition is Hiring

CDE School Nutrition is excited to announce an exciting opportunity to do inspiring work. We are hiring a principal consultant position to oversee the unit's Blueprint to End Hunger implementation grant. Please review the details in the job posting and share with anyone interested. The application closes on Friday, Sept 4. 

For questions, contact Amanda Mercer at or 720-724-3210. 

Tune in to the No Kid Hungry back-to-school meal service webinar Part 2

No Kid Hungry is hosting its second webinar on back-to-school meal service: Feeding Kids during the 2020-21 school year, Part 2 on Monday, Aug. 31. Register for this webinar and tune in to hear from two districts in Texas and Georgia about their plans for feeding students this school year.

For questions, contact

On the menu: meal counting and claiming

School Nutrition will host monthly calls on the last Thursday of each month from 2 to 3 p.m. starting Thursday, Aug. 27. These calls are an optional and informal way to share ideas, ask questions of colleagues and virtually connect with sponsors across the state. Topics will change each month based on sponsor feedback. Complete this online form to submit topics of discussion. Register now! If you do not receive an email, please work with your IT department to add to your safe sender's list. The same registration link will work for each monthly call, and clicking this link will allow you to directly join the call even if you have not registered in advance.
For questions, contact McKenna Pullen at or 720-644-7259.

Program Resources 

New Child Nutrition Portal Dashboard

The new dashboard feature in the Colorado Nutrition Portal includes helpful program information about applicable child nutrition programs. Use the dashboard overview to learn how to navigate the new dashboard feature and quickly access important program information, including application status and claim information.

Summer Meals Program Updates

USDA extends waivers to fill gap for schools starting in September

The USDA announced the extension of four waivers through Wednesday, Sept. 30, to support summer meals program operations in areas where the school year begins in September. These are: 

  • The non-congregate waiver for SFSP

  • The parent or guardian meal pick-up waiver for SFSP

  • The meal pattern waiver for SFSP

  • The area eligibility waiver for open summer meals site

Previously, these waivers expired on Aug. 31, which created a gap for communities where schools are starting instruction after that date. These waivers do not change the options available to sponsors in communities where schools have already started. The USDA has reiterated that the Summer Food Service Program and Seamless Summer Option are no longer available once the school year begins, whether in person or remote. Visit the School Nutrition website for more information on these extensions.

Submit June SFSP claims by Aug. 29

June SFSP claims are due by Saturday, Aug. 29. A claim must show an “accepted” status in the portal to ensure they are paid. Claim instructions and deadlines can be found on the SFSP webpage.

For questions, contact the free and reduced team at free&

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