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Old 04-17-2017, 02:27 PM   #1
A.T. Hagan
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Default Schools Will Soon Have To Put In Writing If They 'Lunch Shame'


Baerbel Schmidt/Getty Images

Every day in this country students come to school without a way to pay for lunch. Right now it's up to the school to decide what happens next.

Since new legislation out of New Mexico on so-called lunch shaming made headlines - we've heard a lot about how schools react.

Some provide kids an alternative lunch, like a cold cheese sandwich. Other schools sometimes will provide hot lunch, but require students do chores, have their hand stamped or wear a wristband showing they're behind in payment. And, some schools will deny students lunch all together.

With policies to handle unpaid meals all over the map, the USDA, which administers the federal school meal program, will soon require that all school districts have a policy on what to do when kids can't pay - a growing problem. By July 1, those policies must be in writing and communicated to staff, parents and the community.
The rest at NPR.

If the child can't pay for their lunch then go after the parents, but DO NOT shame the child! This sort of thing infuriates me.

I live in a poor, rural county where (last I heard) about 60% of the school kids qualified for the "free or reduced price lunch." Eventually someone figured out it was cheaper to simply give every kid a free lunch than to do the necessary record keeping for who could and couldn't pay.

I have mixed emotions about this, but it eliminated that particular problem.

Now, if only the food being served looked as good as in the photo! My kids have been taking their own lunch for a year now. We're both happier that way.
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Old 04-17-2017, 05:39 PM   #2
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Granted this 50 odd years ago, before Food Stamps or WICS and there was the 'surplus food program'. Twice a month we filled out simple income forms (were sadly already in the system) and we picked up a box of basic food items along with a mimeographed sheet or two of basic recipes to use the items give us to make two weeks of meals for two people.

I was allowed to work in the school cafeteria, helping serve meals, clean up and the like.

Didn't feel any shame and don't recall anyone 'shaming' me for doing so. It was a poor area, if anything, maybe some envied those of us working in the cafeteria.

And I agree ---- Would be wonderful if school meals or hospital meals looked as good as they do in stock photos. Though I will say that the meals hubby has had when in the local hospital have been very tasty. Balanced and good eye appeal, too. Of course their small hospital cafeteria offers a pretty good, if limited, range of items. A bit pricey but for what it is and if no other options are available, it's good.
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lunch, put, schools, shame, writing

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