The start of a new school year is a good time to check out financial support programs available to school-age children. Think you donít qualify? The income maximums may be higher than you expect.
National School Lunch ProgramFree or reduced-price lunches are available to students under 18 years old. Children from families earning 130 percent of the poverty level ($29,055 for a family of four) are eligible for free lunches. Students from families with incomes between 130 and 185 percent of poverty level (185 percent is $41,348 for a family of four) are eligible for reduced-price lunches, which can cost no more than 40 cents.
Enrollment is open year-round, so a family can apply during the school year if there has been a sudden loss of income, such as a family member losing a job.
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Subsidized Health Care for ChildrenYour child or teen may qualify for no-cost or low-cost health insurance through the Childrenís Health Insurance Program. Many states offer benefits to families making up to 200 of the poverty level, which is about $45,000 for a family of four.
Health insurance for children is needed for regular checkups and preventive care, as well as prescriptions and emergency treatment.
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Saimi Bergmann writes for the Canton (Ohio) Repository.