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Community Eligibility Provision (CEP)

What is the Community Eligibility Provision?

For the 2023-24 through 2026-27 school years, Ridgecrest Elementary is participating in a federal program called the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). The CEP program allows all students enrolled at Ridgecrest to receive breakfast and lunch at no charge.

Why only at Ridgecrest? Ridgecrest is the only school in the District that has a high enough percentage of students who currently qualify for free meals based on enrollment in other benefit programs like SNAP and TANF.

What are the benefits of CEP?

  • All students receive the benefits of nutritious school meals at no charge

  • Eliminates unpaid meal charges

  • Minimizes stigma

Important Things to Know

  • Ridgecrest families will no longer need to submit a free and reduced-price meal application unless they have students at other schools that may qualify for meal benefits. 

  • Ridgecrest families will be asked to complete a Family Income Survey (a shortened version of the F/R application). Forms should be turned in to the Ridgecrest office.

  • If a Ridgecrest student transfers to another school, they will no longer receive free meals and will need to complete a F/R meal application (if they don’t already qualify through another method).

Forms and Links

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to complete the regular meal application?

You only need to complete the application if you have students at other schools and feel they may qualify for meal benefits.

If I do fill out the regular meal application for my other students, should I include my Ridgecrest student on the form?


What is the Family Income Survey form used for?

The information you provide by returning the Family Income Survey impacts the funding that each school receives from the state government.  Without this information, Ridgecrest Elementary could lose important state funding for educational programs that our students are entitled to.

If my student moves to another school, will they still get free meals?

They will only get free meals if they qualify through other methods:

  • Based on income through the meal application process

  • Enrollment in SNAP, TANF, or some Medicaid programs

  • Certified as McKinney Vento (homeless) by school representative

Can my student still buy extras and snacks at school?

A la carte items and second entrees will be available for purchase with accounts that have funds available on them or with cash.

Can my student still bring their lunch from home?

Yes. Students are not required to eat the meal provided at school. Milk and juice will be available for purchase.