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Trev — there’s no such thing as lunch shaming

school lunch
(Valueline, ThinkStock)

Apparently there’s a new dance raze in New Jersey schools called “lunch shaming,” it’s where students are called out by administrators because they owe money for past meals. Personally I don’t think it exists. There are just too many ways to avoid it, plus the school in a worst care scenario will always give the child a meal.

In Summit, 15 year old Kertana Talla claims she was once kicked out of a lunchroom and humiliated because she didn’t have her lunch money. I would love to know the name of the school that did that but she doesn’t say. What she has done is set up a needless GoFundMe page to raise awareness and funds to help erase lunch debt across the state.

I’m sure Kertana means well and I’m sorry for whatever “shaming” she’s experienced, but the best way for “lunch shaming” to end is for deadbeat parents to pay their bill. Why should you pay for it? Who’s getting the 4000 plus raised so far?

In the state of New Jersey, parents have options concerning their children’s lunch. They could set up an account with the school which they refresh with money so that they can buy lunch. If they qualify they can also get a free lunch, or a reduced lunch, or they can simply pack their child’s lunch.

Having said all that, if the child still does not have lunch, they will be given the meal of the day, say chicken nuggets and french fries, but nothing else. That means no ice cream, snacks, or anything else children add to their meals from their parents account. No shaming, just eating. Schools are more than willing to work out a plan with the parents, but said parents must be willing to make the payments or communicate as to why.

I have no problem with the school reminding the student that they’re behind. Dealing with debt is a great life lesson that will come in handy. I’m sure they weren’t pointing and laughing like the famous Eddie Murphy Ice Cream bit (careful he curses).

Just like the old saying “there’s no such thing as a free lunch,” I don’t think there’s any such thing as lunch shaming, but if your child is experiencing it, there is one solution, pay your bill.

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