Colorado families will continue to receive nutrition benefits for the 2021-22 school year

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Looking for information about P-EBT? Visit the Colorado P-EBT page.

DENVER (Feb. 28, 2022) — The Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) is pleased to announce that it will continue to issue the federal Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) benefits for the 2021-22 school year. This program provides money to purchase food to Colorado families with school-aged children who did not receive school meals when these sites were closed or had reduced hours due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The state estimates approximately 329,000 school-aged children may be eligible for P-EBT benefits if they experience a qualifying disruption to school meal access because of a COVID-19-related closure. P-EBT funds allow families to purchase healthy and wholesome foods based on their dietary needs and preferences from local retailers in their communities. Since March 2020, P-EBT benefits have provided access to nutritional meals to more than 504,000 Colorado children who would have received free or reduced-price meals at school or in childcare facilities.

“P-EBT benefits have been a valuable tool to ensure that Colorado children have regular access to nutritional food that is important to the growth and development of our children,” said Michelle Barnes, executive director of CDHS. “These benefits provide support to Colorado families that have been impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.” 

Families can expect to see the benefits from the Fall 2021 semester months in Summer 2022, and Spring 2022 semester months in Fall 2022. The benefits are issued retroactively so that attendance and outbreak data can be analyzed. 

There is no application for students to receive P-EBT benefits; the P-EBT Program can only act on data submitted to the program by other state agencies, such as school attendance and outbreak data. Eligibility notices will be mailed to the address provided by the student’s school district when Fall and Spring semester benefits are issued, respectively. Families that have had a change or will have a change of address are strongly encouraged to update the address with their student’s school as soon as possible to get current information submitted to the P-EBT Program.

Children who received a P-EBT card for the previous 2020-21 school year or Summer 2021 may receive their 2021-22 school years benefits on the same card. Children who become newly eligible or received prior benefits on an existing SNAP EBT card will have a new P-EBT card mailed to the address provided by the student's school district. Families should keep P-EBT cards, as possible future benefits may be issued on existing P-EBT cards.

Further updates and details will be shared on the P-EBT website, on CDHS social media channels, and through community partners. 

P-EBT was created under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 (H.R. 6201) as an important opportunity to provide nutritional resources to families that are losing or lost access to free or reduced-price school meals as schools across Colorado closed in response to COVID-19.