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Families can apply for the Pandemic EBT program starting today through June 29, 2020.

This document provides a general overview of P-EBT information.

What are P-EBT or Pandemic EBT benefits?

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act allows children who are eligible for free or reduced-price meals at school to receive extra food benefits. These food benefits are called Pandemic EBT or P-EBT benefits. The benefits are designed to help cover costs associated with days children would have been in school; therefore, the benefits help families in Tennessee buy food when school is closed. P-EBT benefits are additional benefits that do not replace any child nutrition program meals being offered. Children may continue to receive "grab n go" meals or emergency food at COVID-19 emergency feeding sites offered by schools and community locations, even if they receive P-EBT benefits.

Who is eligible for P-EBT benefits?

Children are eligible for P-EBT benefits if:

  • Their school closed due to coronavirus (COVID 19); and
  • They are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals
  • All students in attendance of a Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) school/district.

How much in P-EBT benefits will participants receive?

The program will provide $5.70 per child per each day the child qualifies for P-EBT. Qualifying families will receive P-EBT support in two installments, one for meals in March and April initially, and then one additional disbursement later next month for May meals.  

How to apply for P-EBT

Parents who already receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits currently, do not need to apply.  The funds began arriving on the EBT card they already use beginning Friday, June 12. 

Parents who do not receive SNAP benefits, but whose children do qualify for free or reduced school meals, will need to apply for P-EBT online beginning Monday, June 15The application period will end June 29, 2020. DHS has been informed that there is an issue with the P-EBT application when selecting a district/school - this issue should be corrected on June 16..


Individuals who need assistance completing their P-EBT application or have general questions about the program are encouraged to call the Tennessee Department of Human Services hotline at 1-833-496-0661 and select option 3.


For more information, view the press release on the Tennessee Department of Human Services website.