Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT)
For P-EBT benefits for the school year 2021-22 and/or Summer 2022 P-EBT, please review the following guidance carefully. Our office is experiencing a high volume of inquiries from families asking about the status of their students' P-EBT benefits, and our team members are working quickly to respond to everyone.
Households who did not apply for free or reduced-price meals in school year 2021-22 are not eligible for this benefit. All schools were able to offer meals at no cost during the 2021-22 year, due to nationwide COVID-19 waivers. However, families were still required to complete a free or reduced-price meal application or be certified under SNAP/Direct Certification in order to be determined eligible for free or reduced-price meal benefits.
1. The benefits for summer 2022 are currently being processed. If your child already has an active white P-EBT card, then the summer benefit will be loaded directly to that card. If your child does not have an active card then a new card will be sent with the summer benefit mid-August 2023.
2. If one child in the household received summer P-EBT benefits and the other child has not, please be patient; the benefits are still being issued. If you have not received a benefit by mid-August, please contact the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) again. At that time we may know more on why your child has not received a summer benefit. Remember that summer benefits are issued based on school-submitted data. Students enrolled in a public school during the last month of the regular school year (2021-22) and were determined eligible for free or reduced-price meals are eligible for summer 2022 P-EBT benefits. If you have questions about your child's eligibility, please contact your school district.
3. If you are inquiring about the status of a benefit outside of school year 2021-22 or summer 2022, DESE will not be able to assist you. Previous years’ P-EBT benefits are no longer available.
4. The state of Missouri will not be applying to participate in the U.S. government’s extended response to the COVID-19 pandemic through the SY 2022-2023 or summer 2023 P-EBT programs. The P-EBT benefits were originally administered as part of a temporary relief program, and as many Missouri families can attest, there have been a number of challenges throughout the process due to the federal requirements associated with accessing and administering the benefits, coupled with the limitations of our current state and local data collection systems. Further, the SY 2022-2023 and summer 2023 P-EBT federal program timelines were reduced compared to the SY 2021-2022 and summer 2022 P-EBT programs, which are still being processed at this time. Once these current P-EBT programs are completed, Missouri’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and Department of Social Services (DSS) will focus on implementing the system changes necessary to facilitate participation in summer EBT programs in future years.
5. If you are inquiring with concerns about your existing P-EBT card, such as the address or how to activate the card, please contact the Department of Social Services (DSS) directly at 855-373-4636.
You can review the Frequently Asked Questions document for more guidance on our website at https://dese.mo.gov/media/pdf/p-ebt-frequency-asked-questions-answers-sy-2021-22-and-summer-2022-parentguardian.
P-EBT Information Materials
- P-EBT Frequency Asked Questions & Answers SY 2021-22 and Summer 2022 (Parent/Guardian)
- Let's Talk Tuesday P-EBT (12-6-22)
- Submit Student Absence and Summer Template
- P-EBT County Codes
- P-EBT Training for Schools
- P-EBT Letter for Schools | Complete Survey to obtain LEA Unique Registration Code
- P-EBT Letter for Families - Word | PDF
- P-EBT Letter to Schools - May 19, 2022
- SY 21-22 and Summer 2022 State Plan for P-EBT Children in Child Care
- SY 21-22 State Plan for P-EBT for Children in School
- Summer 2022 State Plan for P-EBT for Children in School
- Missouri P-EBT Approval Letter SY 21-22 (Schools Only)
Approved State Plan
- Missouri P-EBT Approval Letter SY 21-22 (Child Care Only)
- Missouri P-EBT Approval Letter Summer 2022
- State Plan for P-EBT Children in School and Child Care
- State Plan for Summer 2022 with Child Care
DESE Food and Nutrition Services office is waiting on your LEA to submit two items for P-EBT benefits. The DEADLINE to submit these files is March 13, 2023. Please carefully review all the information below:
- The first item is your LEAs student absence template completed with the free or reduced-price eligible students that had a COVID-related absence during SY 21-22. Starting on September 1, 2021 students that would have normally received a free or reduced-price meal at school had it not been due to a COVID-related school closure or COVID-related absence are eligible for P-EBT benefits. If you have not yet completed this first item please follow these steps-
a. Watch the Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer training video
b. Review the P-EBT FAQ
c. Next, after watching the training video you must complete the survey to obtain your LEA unique registration
d. Once you receive our LEA unique registration code and log-in steps you can download your unique LEA
student absence template using the DESE P-EBT Servicenow Portal,
e. Review the knowledge base how-to articles and videos within the portal and follow the instructions to
upload the student absence template to the portal.
Things to pay very close attention to and most common errors we have seen when completing the student absence template:
- The absent begin and end dates must be within the eligible range. Eligible absences begin and end dates can only range between September 1, 2021 through the end of the SY 21-22 (June 30, 2022). For example students absences during the month of August 2021 will be cancelled. Students are not eligible for P-EBT benefits during the month of August. If a student absent begin date starts in August and ends in September – the student will only receive benefits for the days missed in September.
- Please DO NOT include August begin or end absent dates on your file.
- Enter the number of consecutive school days the student did not receive a free or reduced-price meal at school because of COVID. For example if the student absence date began on November 8 and ended on November 17th you must only count the number of school days the student was absent.
- Do not count weekend days, non-school days, weather related AMI days or holidays in the number of consecutive school days the student was absent, these absences will be cancelled. Do not add excel formulas to calculate the number of days for you.
- You must enter absence begin and end dates using the format MM/DD/YYYY. If you use a different format the date does not show up in the portal and may cause the case to cancel. Please double check your date format before uploading!
- REVIEW ALL YOUR DATA AND DOUBLE CHECK FORMATS PRIOR TO SUBMITTING THE FILE.
- Only include students that would have received a free or reduced-price meal at school had it not been for a COVID-related absence during SY 21-22 only. Paid students are not eligible for P-EBT benefits. Do NOT include Paid students on your spreadsheet.
- Each consecutive day absence should be reported on a single line. If the student had more than one consecutive day absent use another line in the spreadsheet to report the second consecutive day absence.
- Call our office if you need help or have any questions before submitting.
2. The second item is your LEAs student data for Summer 2022. THIS IS A SEPARATE SUBMISSION. Summer benefits are available for school children who received free or reduce-price school meals during the month of May 2022 or the last month of the regular school year 21-22. Because the covered summer period is an extension of the school year, this includes free or reduced-price eligible children who graduate at the end of the school year 21-22. Summer benefits are NOT tied to Summer School attendance. School children who were eligible for free or reduced price school meals under the NSLP and SBP in SY 21-22 and enrolled in school during the last month of the regular school year are eligible for P-EBT summer. If a child dropped out of school prior to the last month of the school year, that child would be ineligible for summer P-EBT benefits. If you have not yet completed this second item please follow these steps-
a. Carefully review the summer benefits information by watching the Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer training
b. Review the P-EBT FAQ
c. Log-in to the Servicenow portal and download the student summer template.
e. Make sure you have all free and reduced-price students only and information completed on the template,
review and upload.
Please complete these two items as the best you can to ensure these families receive their benefits timely. Our office will be reaching out to schools directly who have not submitted data. Please forward this message to anyone else in the district who needs to be involved. The deadline to submit your file is March 13.
The Pandemic Eligibility Benefit Program (P-EBT) eligibility is for free or reduced-price students who normally would have received a meal at school had it not been for a COVID-19 related absence in school year 2021-2022 (September 1, 2021-June 30, 2022). DESE needs to collect this student level information from the schools and then share with Dept. of Social Services to issue a P-EBT card with benefits loaded based on the level of days the student was absent.
The Summer 22 P-EBT is made available to students who were eligible for free or reduced-price meals during the last month of the 2021-22 school year and these students will receive a summer benefit.
This program student sharing for P-EBT benefits under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, specifically 20 U.S.C. § 1232g(b)(1)(C) and 34 C.F.R. § 99.35, as well as the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, H.R. 6201, Section 1101(e).
Here is the USDA guidance on P-EBT https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/state-guidance-coronavirus-pandemic-ebt-pebt