Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
School Nutrition and Meal Cost Study

This study is the first nationally representative, comprehensive assessment of the school meal programs since the updated nutrition standards for school meals were phased in beginning School Year 2012-2013. A study methodology report that describes the study design, sampling and data collection and a Summary Report that provides a brief overview of the study and key findings from the various reports are also available.

Resource | Research | Breastfeeding
National and State-Level Estimates of WIC Eligibility and WIC Program Reach in 2016

This report, the latest in a series of annual reports on WIC eligibility, presents 2016 national and State estimates of the number of people eligible for WIC benefits and the percents of the eligible population and the US population covered by the Program, including estimates by participant category.

The report also provides estimates by region, State, U.S. territory, and race and ethnicity.

Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
Direct Certification in the National School Lunch Program Report to Congress: State Implementation Progress, School Year 2015-2016 and 2016-2017

This report responds to the requirement of Public Law 110-246 to assess the effectiveness of State and local efforts to directly certify children for free school meals. Direct certification is a process conducted by the States and by local educational agencies (LEAs) to certify eligible children for free meals without the need for household applications. The 2004 Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act required LEAs to establish systems to directly certify children from households that receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits by school year (SY) 2008-2009. This report presents information on the outcomes of direct certification for SY 2015-2016 and SY 2016-2017.

Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
Direct Certification in the National School Lunch Program Report to Congress: State Implementation Progress, School Year 2014-2015

This report responds to the requirement of Public Law 110-246 to assess the effectiveness of State and local efforts to directly certify children for free school meals. Direct certification is a process conducted by the States and by local educational agencies (LEAs) to certify eligible children for free meals without the need for household applications. The 2004 Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act required LEAs to establish systems to directly certify children from households that receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits by school year (SY) 2008-2009. This report presents information on the outcomes of direct certification for SY 2014-2015.

Resource | Research | General/Other
Asset Limits, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Participation, and Financial Stability

This study examines the impact of SNAP asset limits on low-income households’ financial stability, including their participation in traditional financial markets and their ability to weather financial shocks. It found that low-income households with relatively high asset holdings were older and had more education compared to other low-income households.

Resource | Research | Participation Characteristics
National and State-Level Estimates of Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Eligibles and Program Reach, 2013

This report offers updated estimates of the number of people eligible for WIC benefits in 2013, including (1) estimates by participant category (including children by single year of age) and coverage rates; (2) updated estimates in U.S. territories; and (3) confidence intervals. The national estimates presented in this report are based on a methodology developed in 2003 by the Committee on National Statistics of the National Research Council (CNSTAT). The report’s State-level estimates use a methodology developed by the Urban Institute that apportions the national figures using data from the American Community Survey.

Resource | Research | Participation Characteristics
National and State-Level Estimates of Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Eligibles and Program Reach, 2012

This report offers updated estimates of the number of people eligible for WIC benefits in 2012, including (1) estimates by participant category (including children by single year of age) and coverage rates; (2) updated estimates in U.S. territories; and (3) confidence intervals. The national estimates presented in this report are based on a methodology developed in 2003 by the Committee on National Statistics of the National Research Council (CNSTAT). The report’s State-level estimates use a methodology developed by the Urban Institute that apportions the national figures using data from the American Community Survey.

Resource | Research | Participation Characteristics
Dynamics and Determinants of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Participation from 2008 to 2012

These reports describe individuals’ patterns of SNAP participation and analyze which factors were associated with their decisions to enter or exit the program. Both studies use data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation covering the period from 2008 to 2012.

Resource | Research | Demonstrations
Report on the Summer Food for Children Demonstration Projects for Fiscal Year 2013

This Congressional report summarizes the implementation and evaluation of two approaches tested in the summers of 2011 through 2013. Summer EBT for Children (SEBTC) uses existing electronic benefits transfer systems to provide household benefits for children.  The Enhanced Summer Food Service Program (eSFSP) tests several changes to the traditional program, including incentives to extend operating periods, incentives to add enrichment activities, meal delivery for children in rural areas, and weekend and holiday backpacks.

Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
Building a Healthy America: A Profile of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

As the time for reauthorization of SNAP again approaches, it is useful to take stock of its accomplishments, identify those features that have contributed to its success, and look for new opportunities to strengthen operations to achieve program goals more fully. To that end, this is a summary of past research on program operations and outcomes.