HISD families can now apply for a Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT), a one-time benefit for families who temporarily lost access to student meals during the 2020–2021 school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The application is available online at yourtexasbenefits.com/Learn/PEBT from June 2 through Aug. 13, 2021.
Offered though the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Texas Health and Human Services Commission, the benefit program was established last year to help families buy food during the pandemic. This year, it will provide up to $1,200 per child for eligible families.
The benefit amount is based on what school the student attended and the number of days most students at the school received remote instruction. Some eligible families may not receive the benefit if all students at their school attended in-person classes.
Eligible families include those with children up to 21 years old who were certified for free or reduced-price meals at a Texas school during the 2020-2021 school year, as well as those with children at schools that offer meals at no charge through the Community Eligibility Provision.
Because HISD provides free meals to all students through the Community Eligibility Provision, all HISD students are eligible to receive P-EBT benefits.
“We have worked hard over the past year to make sure we provided continued access to healthy food to our students and families who needed it most,” HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said. “As we wind down our own community distribution program, this benefit comes at the perfect time to help our families who are still recovering.”
Families who got SNAP benefits during the 2020–2021 school year will have P-EBT benefits loaded on their current Lone Star Card. Families who did not get SNAP benefits during the 2020–2021 school year will have a P-EBT Card with funds mailed to them.
P-EBT benefits can be used wherever SNAP food benefits are accepted and at any retailer that accepts the Lone Star Card to buy household food items such as fruit, meat, poultry, fish, dairy and bread.
For more information, please visit hhs.texas.gov/PEBT or call the P-EBT Call Center at 833-442-1255, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.–6 p.m. Central time.