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CEP is an alternative to collecting, approving, and verifying household eligibility applications for free and reduced price eligible​ students in high poverty local educational agencies (LEAs) for schools participating in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs.​

 Application Process

CEP Application

The Online CEP Evaluation and Application Module is closed for SY 23-24 elections. Due to the recent USDA Final Rule reducing the identified student percentage to 25% and greater, as ISBE evaluates options, more information will be shared in the near future.

At a minimum, the 25% Identified Student percentage will be an options for all LEAs for the SY 24-25 elections of CEP which will begin April 1, 2024. The deadline for CEP application submission for SY 24-25 will be June 30, 2024.

Step One of the CEP application process is to secure an April 1 enrollment file, ensuring that all NSLP/SBP students are included in the template format below. ISBE team members are available for technical assistance if needed. Contact us at​ or (800) 545-7892.

  • Quick Reference GuidePDF Document​​
  • Sample Template File​CSV Document
    • Only CSV file extension is supported
    • First Name is required (Cannot exceed 30 characters)
    • Middle Name is not required (Cannot exceed 30 characters)
    • Last Name is required (Cannot exceed 30 characters)
    • Birth date is required (Cannot be a future date)
    • Gender is required (Must be M or F)
    • ISBE WINS Site number is required 
    • Student Id is not required

For any school electing CEP for the first time, it is highly recommended that you complete the CEP evaluation worksheets below to ensure that election to CEP is financially feasible for your school/district.​​​​​​​​​​​​

 Evaluation Worksheets

 Outreach Data

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