What is Direct Certification?

The Direct Certification Matching Process is intended to certify all eligible students for free school meals without further application, who reside in a household receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Therefore, if a member of the household is eligible for SNAP, all children in that household are eligible for meals at no charge.

However, while the US Department of Agriculture has stipulated that states need to achieve a 95% Direct Certification rate, the process is often onerous and time-consuming. These challenges can lead to both over and under payments of meal reimbursements, and ultimately students going hungry at school.

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How can eScholar DirectMatch™ help?

Key Features and Benefits

Match Accurately with Confidence. eScholar DirectMatch’s highly sophisticated matching engine uses a combination of deterministic and probabilistic matching algorithms.
Automate the Matching Process. Student records can be automatically sourced from eScholar Uniq-ID or manually uploaded from any other unique student identifier systems and matched against SNAP files during Direct Certification process.
Review, Verify, and Audit Your Data. All match decisions are kept permanently and are accessible by the end user through the original submission throughout the Direct Certification process, including the SNAP file loaded by the state.
Access eScholar DirectMatch from a web browser. The web-based solution can be centrally managed by the State, while at the same time empowering local education agencies (LEAs) and School Food Administrators (SFAs) to initiate the Direct Certification and Direct Verification process and resolve near matches, all within one centralized system.
Match Records Without a Unique Identifier. Student records from non-public institutions can be matched against a SNAP file even without a state unique ID.
Resolve Near Matches Quickly. An end user, such as a school food administrator, can quickly resolve the near match through the user interface without opening another Excel file or uploading data to a separate system once the match decision has been made.
Protect Personally Identifiable Information. eScholar DirectMatch access is set at the user role level, ensuring that an LEA user only sees data for its LEA.
Set Your State’s Matching Properties. Configurable matching properties allow administrators to set matching thresholds, search history, and to use matching fields such as Address.
Available as a Module to eScholar Uniq-ID customers. For those states using the eScholar Uniq-ID, the eScholar DirectMatch component can be added as a plugin to eScholar Uniq-ID v10 which also includes a new configurable DirectMatch role.
The solution roadmap for eScholar DirectMatch includes matching to other file types, such as Medicaid, TANF, Foster, and more. Contact us today to see how eScholar DirectMatch can help your state improve its Direct Certification rate.
Webinar: Tackling Direct Certifcation With eScholar DirectMatch