What is P-EBT?
All families with students ages 5 to 18 enrolled at Marion Community Schools (K-12) last school year will receive funds through the Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer Program.
This new one-time benefit gives families with school children an EBT card to purchase food. This is meant to replace the free school meals that would have been available to them from March to May, when schools were closed.
Because Marion Community Schools is a Community Eligibility district through the USDA's National School Lunch Program, EVERY student at MCS is eligible for free school meals during the school year, with no application needed. Therefore, as part of the P-EBT program, you will receive this one-time benefit.
How much money will I receive?
You will receive $319 for each child enrolled at MCS last school year, which is about $5.70 for each day that schools were closed due to the pandemic.
Do I have to apply?
There is no application process to receive P-EBT.
How will I recieve these funds?
If you have an existing EBT card that you use for SNAP benefits, your P-EBT benefits will be automatically added to that card. If you do not already have an EBT card, you will receive one in the mail with information on how to activate the card and use the benefits. Cards should be received by mid-June.
Benefits began loading at the end of May and will continue into June. Benefits are not being loaded in any alphabetical order; they are being loaded in batches. You may not receive benefits for all eligible children at the same time. All benefits will be added to same card.
If you receive a new EBT card, please follow the instructions that came with it to activate it.
Additional tips based on some common problems we have heard of:
- Please pay particular attention to the code you will need when asked for your student's Social Security number. You will not actually use the Social Security number. You will use the code given instead.
- If you still have trouble activating the card, please check to see what birth date is on file at Marion Community Schools for the student whose name is on the card. It is possible if MCS had the wrong birthdate that you will need to use that incorrect birthdate, as that is the information these P-EBT cards is based on. (And if you do find that we have the wrong birthdate for your student, please also email the correct birthdate to firstname.lastname@example.org, so we can get your record with us corrected!)
If you have not received your P-EBT card (or have not received your benefits on an EBT card you already had), you can call the Indiana Division of Family Resources hotline, 800-403-0864.
Who can use these benefits?
These benefits are for your family and are non-transferable, but the student whose name is on the card does not need to be present when you make eligible purchases with the card. No ID is required to be able to use this card.
What can I buy with P-EBT funds?
P-EBT benefits have the same uses and restrictions as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. The benefits can be used only for eligible food purchases. For more information click here: https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/eligiblefood-items.
Funds can be kept without activity for 6 months. After that time benefits may be expunged.