By Lori Greer of Liberal
On the front page of the Friday, Jan. 31, paper, a story about student lunches in Salt Lake City was run. The story was an apology from the district for taking student’s lunches from them because they owed money.
I find it interesting that the Liberal paper runs this story on the front page, when the same or similar situation is happening here in our own district.
I know that this has happened at Cottonwood Intermediate School. It seems that the parents did not provide money or the proper paper work for free lunches for their child. After the child was seated and eating lunch, the tray was taken away, only to have the food thrown in the trash.
This was embarrassing for the student, and certainly not morale boosting.
It also takes away the tools students need to do school work, and it most certainly is a waste of my taxpaying dollars.
No child should suffer without a lunch because of a parent’s mistake. If I had sent my child to school without a lunch, the school most definitely would have turned me into child welfare.
We already have a high rate of free and reduced lunches at our schools, so certainly a few extra in a day would not be such a burden. I wonder how many other schools in USD 480 have done the same?
The school board is asking me to vote yes for a bond election of several millions of dollars, but I wonder who the bond will really benefit. Considering I am in the 53 percent of voters over 50 years of age, have no children in the school system and own my home, I do not feel confidence in the system.
Do not tell me that the school district cannot give students a peanut butter sandwich or a package of crackers.
I also ask why students who brought their lunch but not silverware are told they have to use a punch on their meal cards to get a fork.
To the school board, at this time I will vote no. I want school board members to be accountable to the students’ well-being. I also want the members to be financially accountable to the citizens of Liberal and disclose exactly how much and where the money will be going.
The entire USD No. 480 Charging Policy: DISTRICT WIDE/ALL SCHOOLS, was ran in Tuesday’s edition of the L&T, and it included this paragaph:
“When a student fails to pay or bring their own lunch, an “Emergency Meal” consisiting of a carton of milk and a Peanut Butter/Jelly sandwich will be provided to the student. If money is not sent after two “Emergency Meals” have been served, the student will be provided with crackers and milk until money is received.”