2022-2023 Home School/Virtual School P-EBT FAQ

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service approved the continuation of the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) program for the 2022-23 school year (SY22-23) through May 11, 2023. The Tennessee Department of Human Services (TDHS) will distribute a one-time payment to all home school and virtual school students that are eligible for P-EBT benefits.

Parents can submit applications on the P-EBT Parent Portal (https://onedhs.tn.gov/parent) beginning April 21, 2023. Eligible students will receive benefits via P-EBT cards in July 2023. Please visit www.connectebt.com or call (888) 997-9444 if you have any questions related to P-EBT cards.

What is the P-EBT program for SY 22-23 Homeschool and Virtual School?

P-EBT is a federally funded COVID-19 relief program made possible through the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Using P-EBT cards, the program provides nutritional assistance to National School Lunch Program participants and qualifying families to replace school meals missed due to COVID-19 related events.

The federal government extended the program to homeschool and virtual school students for the 2022-23 school year. This is the last round of P-EBT benefits since the federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency will expire at the end of the day on May 11, 2023.

2022-23 Homeschool and Virtual School Eligibility - Who can receive benefits?

Homeschool/virtual students must meet the following criteria to receive a benefit:

  • Eligible to receive free or reduced price meals for the 22-23 school year.
  • Transferred from or did not attend in-person school on or after January 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Would have attended a NSLP-participating institution if not for COVID-19. This includes schools that are currently:    Community Eligibility Provision School or A school operating under Provision 2 or 3 or  A Non-Community Eligibility Provision School

Students who never enrolled in in-person schools due to the COVID-19 pandemic are also eligible provided the Tennessee Department of Education can verify their home school or virtual school information from their district of origin.

Please refer to the P-EBT website or P-EBT Parent Portal if you have any questions. You can also contact the P-EBT assistance line at (833) 419-3210.

*A home school is a school conducted or directed by a parent or parents or a legal guardian or guardians for their own children. Parents conducting a home school under the supervision of the superintendent of a local education agency should submit the Tennessee Notice of Intent to Home School form before the start of each school year.

**A virtual school is a public school in which the school uses technology to deliver a significant portion of instruction to its students via the internet in a virtual or remote setting. Virtual schools are created, operated, and overseen by a school district. Click the following link to see a list of public virtual school in Tennessee: Virtual Schools (tn.gov)

Frequently Asked Questions

How and where to submit home-school / virtual school P-EBT application?

Parents can submit P-EBT registration on the P-EBT Parent Portal (https://onedhs.tn.gov/parent) beginning April 21, 2023 until May 5, 2023.

If you do not have a P-EBT Parent Portal account, please visit https://tdhs.service-now.com/relief to create an account and then click the Parent Portal button.

Who decides if a child is eligible for 2022-23 home-school / virtual school P-EBT?

Any home-school or virtual student who is eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals in the 22-23 school year AND unenrolled/transferred/or never enrolled from in-person school due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes students who unenrolled from schools that are currently a Community Eligibility Provision School or a school operating under Provision 2 or 3, or Non-Community Eligibility Provision School.

Students who never enrolled in in-person schools due to the COVID-19 pandemic are also eligible provided the Tennessee Department of Education can verify their home school or virtual school information from their district of origin.

When will I get my 2022-23 home-school / virtual school P-EBT benefits?

Home-school/ Virtual School Year 2022-23 P-EBT benefits will be distributed around July 2023. To check the status and distribution date of P-EBT benefits, parents can use the P-EBT Parent Portal by visiting https://onedhs.tn.gov/parent or calling the P-EBT hotline at 1-833-419-3210. Distribution dates are also shared on the TDHS website, and on TDHS Facebook and Twitter accounts.

How much will I get?

You can check your P-EBT card balance on www.connectebt.com or by calling the number on the back of your P-EBT card.

My address is incorrect, can I update my address?

Yes, to update please visit https://onedhs.tn.gov/relief to login or create an account, click the Parent Portal button, and update your address as needed. You may also call the P-EBT hotline at 833-419-3210.

I don’t agree with the home-school / virtual school P-EBT amount my child received, what can I do?

Parents who believe their child’s School Year 2022-23 Home-school / virtual school P-EBT benefits are incorrect can submit an administrative review request. Additional information will be provided once benefits are distributed.  

I have received my child’s P-EBT card, how do I activate it?

We encourage all families to activate each student's P-EBT card as soon as the card is received.

Please call 1-888-997-9444 to activate the card. To activate the card, you will need the last four (4) numbers on the P-EBT card. When it asks for the last four (4) digits of the child’s social security number, use 0000 and date of birth for the child identified on the card.  During the activation process you will be instructed to select a four-digit personal identification number (PIN) which you will use at SNAP authorized retailers along with the card to access the benefits.

Why did my child not receive a P-EBT card?

If you think your child qualifies for Home-school / virtual school P-EBT benefits but you have not received a card, call the P-EBT Assistance Line at 833-419-3210.

How do I check my P-EBT balance?

You can call 1-888-997-9444 (the number on the back of your P-EBT card) to check your P-EBT balance.

I lost my P-EBT card. Can I get a new one?

Yes. Visit www.connectebt.com to request a new P-EBT card or call 1-888-997-9444. The card may take up to 30 days to arrive.

Please note, this is the last round of P-EBT benefits since the federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency will expire at the end of the day on May 11, 2023.

Where can I use my P-EBT benefits? What can I buy with them?

You can use your P-EBT benefits at any store that accepts SNAP, including at select online grocers. Most retailers have signs saying they accept SNAP or EBT.

What can I buy with the P-EBT card?

You can buy most fresh, canned, frozen food items including but not limited to:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Meat, dairy and eggs
  • Rice, beans and dry goods
  • Seeds to grow your own plants

What items can I NOT buy with the P-EBT card?

Items you can NOT buy include:

  • Prepared meals sold hot and ready to eat
  • Diapers
  • Cleaning products
  • Toilet paper, paper towels, etc.
  • Supplements / medicine
  • Pet food
  • Alcohol

For more information regarding eligible food items visit: https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/eligible-food-items

Who do I contact for any additional questions I may have about P-EBT?

For any additional questions you may have regarding P-EBT, call the P-EBT Assistance Line at (833) 419-3210.

Parents can Click Here to check eligibility for available P-EBT and verify their mailing address on the P-EBT Parent Portal.

Click Here to Access the P-EBT Parent Portal

Which sources of income can I use to verify my income?

*Tax documents are not accepted for income verification purposes unless you are self-employed or a farmer.*

Sources of Income for Children

Sources of Child Income


Earnings from work

A child has a regular full or part-time job where they earn a salary or wages

Social Security

 - Disability Payments

 - Survivor’s Benefits

A child is blind or disabled and receives Social Security benefits

A parent is disabled, retired, or deceased, and their child receives Social Security benefits

Income from person outside the household A friend or extended family member regularly gives a child spending money

Income from any other source

A child receives regular income from a private pension fund, annuity, or trust

Sources of Income for Adults

Sources of Adult Income


Earnings from work

• Salary, wages, cash bonuses

• Net income from self-employment (farm or owned business)

• If you are in the U.S. Military:

    -  Basic pay and cash bonuses (DO NOT includes combat pay, FSSA, or privatized housing allowances)  

    - Supplemental Allowance, and privatized housing allowances)

Allowances for off-base housing, food, and clothing

Public Assistance/Alimony/Child Support

• Unemployment benefits

• Worker’s compensation

• Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

• Cash assistance from State or local government

• Alimony payments

• Child support payments

• Veteran’s benefits

• Strike benefits

Any other income regularly received

• Social Security (including railroad retirement and black lung


• Private pensions or disability benefits

• Regular income from trusts or estates

• Annuities

• Investment income

• Earned interest

• Rental income

• Regular cash payments from outside household