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The Direct Certification Report is available for all school districts, including nonpublic schools through the Michigan Student Data System (MSDS). The Direct Certification Report matches student enrollment data that Local Educational Agencies (LEAS) upload to the MSDS with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) participant data, as well as Foster Children data from the Michigan Department of Human Services (DHS).
Students on the Direct Certification Report are automatically certified as eligible for free school meals. Each LEA must notify households with matched students that they are eligible for free school meals and no further application is necessary. If the household wants to decline the free school meals benefit they must notify the school. For more information, please refer to the Eligibility Guidance for School Meals Manual at http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Guidance/default.htm .
The Direct Certification Report must be pulled at a minimum of three times during the school year:
The Center for Educational Performance and Information (CEPI) will refresh the Direct Certification report monthly. MDE encourages schools to pull the Direct Certification monthly to ensure all students eligible are receiving proper meal benefits. The Direct Certification Report Timeline for School Year 2012-2013 is available at: http://www.michigan.gov/cepi/0,4546,7-113-986_50502_53828---,00.html .
For more information on the requirements for pulling the Direct Certification Report go to the USDA memo, Frequency of Direct Certification Matching Activities Beginning in School Year 2011-2012 available at: http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/governance/Policy-Memos/2011/SP31-2011.pdf
The Direct Certification Report format in the MSDS has been modified. A new column called "Eligibility Category" has been added to easily identify a student certified via Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Aid for Needy Families (TANF), or foster child.
Each student will only have one designation in this column. For example, if a student is a foster child and receives SNAP, the designation will be for SNAP. For those students certified via SNAP and TANF, eligibility can be extended to additional children in a household.
To review a sample direct certification report with these changes:
1. Go to http://www.michigan.gov/cepi
Exit Date column
1. This column will be populated for any student the district report as exited. This change will help users identify and filter out students who were enrolled in the district and subsequently left during the school year.
Direct Certification for Non-Public Schools:
Before the Direct Certification Report is accessible, nonpublic schools participating in the NSLP must upload student enrollment data to the MSDS. A webcast Direct Certification for School Year 2011-2012 First Steps, is available at: http://mediasite.mihealth.org/mediasite/Viewer/?peid=79ee224d69d2451fa59c3a993a4af7f51d
For more detailed instruction on how to upload nonpublic school student enrollment, CEPI has the Direct Certification Report User's Guide - Nonpublic Schools is available at: http://www.michigan.gov/cepi/0,4546,7-113-986_50502_53828---,00.html
Questions regarding the technical MSDS computer applications may be directed to CEPI Customer Support by e-mail to email@example.com or phone 517-335-0505 and select option "3."
Questions regarding the National School Lunch Program Direct Certification requirement may be directed to the School Nutrition Programs unit by e-mail to MDEfirstname.lastname@example.org or phone 517-373-3347.
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