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The Summer Electronic Benefits Transfer (Summer EBT) program information

The Summer Electronic Benefits Transfer (Summer EBT) program is a federally funded food assistance program administered at the state level. In Tennessee, the Department of Human Services (TDHS) utilizes records from the state’s Department of Education (DOE) to provide nutrition benefits to eligible school age children during summer months when school meals are not available. Like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), benefits are distributed through EBT cards that can be used to purchase groceries. Eligible families will receive $40 per eligible child, per month, in a one-time payment of $120 beginning in June 2024.

Summer EBT Eligibility

Tennessee children may qualify for Summer EBT through:

  1. Participation in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Families First (TANF), or TennCare (Medicaid): School age children who participated in SNAP, Families First (TANF), or TennCare during the 2023/24 academic year are automatically eligible for Summer EBT. These families do not need to apply for Summer EBT.
  2. 2023/24 National School Lunch Program Eligibility: Children who applied and were approved for free or reduced-price meals at a National School Lunch Program (NSLP) participating school during the 2023/24 academic year are automatically eligible for Summer EBT. These families do not need to apply to receive Summer EBT.
  3. Summer EBT Application: Families who are not directly certified and did not receive NSLP for the 2023/24 school year can apply to receive Summer EBT. Benefit approval will be based on income guidelines.

Applying for Summer EBT

Although most Summer EBT recipients will not need to apply to receive benefits, Tennessee families should apply for Summer EBT if:

  • Their child is not directly certified through SNAP, Families First or TennCare.
  • They did not receive approval for an NSLP application or receive free or reduced priced meals at a NSLP participant school during the 2023/24 academic year. These students should apply regardless of their school’s Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) status. CEP is a universal meal plan under the NSLP that permits eligible districts and schools to provide meal service to all students at no charge, regardless of economic status. Students at CEP schools are encouraged to apply. 

Checking Your Child’s Summer EBT Eligibility Status

The Summer EBT Parent Portal also makes it easy for Tennessee parents to

  • Review a student’s contact information to ensure benefits are delivered to the correct address.
  • Sign up to receive Summer EBT text message updates.
  • File a reconsideration request or appeal, if necessary.

Note: Tennessee families who already have a One DHS Customer Portal Account should use their current One DHS Account credentials to log into the parent portal.

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