Let’s admit it — School lunches have never had a great reputation, but there’s no doubt that that over the years, the variety and actual nutrition that is provided in school lunches have improved. Although it’s a far cry from what would be made from a home-packed lunch, each district and county tries its best to offer the most nutritious meals they can afford so the students are able to absorb essential vitamins, minerals, and most importantly, information that they teach in school.
This is something that many kids who grew up in the 90’s were accustomed to. Chocolate milk, some bland, over cooked, mushy sorry excuse for a vegetable, a rectangle that almost resembles a pizza, and some fruit soaked in syrup.
If we were to compare it to the lunches we expect to be fed to our children these days, it seems crazy that we would even offer something that resembles the image above and expect kids to be fed nutritiously both physically and mentally.
Many schools are beginning to realize and prioritize that nutritious lunches are something that are affordable and well help foster our children’s growth.
If you were to ask yourself, how well would you be able to concentrate in class when you’re being fed overly processed foods compared to foods that are wholesome, filling, good, and will help form good eating habits to avoid diseases down the road.
But that’s when an Alabama father was confused, then enraged when his son came home from school with a stamp.
At first, it seemed like one of those good-job stamps. Or, Jon thought that it could have been a fun ink stamp from a fellow student?
Sadly, none of those guesses were right.
When Jon Bivens looked closer at the stamp on his third-grader’s arm he saw the text beneath the smiley stated, “I need lunch money”.
This was due to school’s specific cafeteria system. Since the school that Bivens’ son attends in Gardendale, Alabama, has refillable charge cards, parents have to refill the cards as needed.
However, Jon’s son usually brought his lunch to school and only occasionally used the card to buy a snack here and there.
So, when the card ran out of funds, Jon forgot to refill it. When his son tried to use it to pick up a little extra lunch, it was declined.
Instead of sending him with a note to notify his parents, however, the school to placed the stamp on his arm. Apparently, this was how the school tells parents to load up the lunch cards with money.
Biven’s rfers to the stamp as a “brand” and sees it as a public humiliation for both his son and the family. Just think of the bullying, bad feelings, and shame a kid must endure when marked for all to see with a note on their body stating they can’t afford lunch.
In this case, it was a simple mix up with a father forgetting to throw some cash on a cafeteria card, but what about the families who can’t afford school lunch? Should their children be “branded” so that the whole world knows a kid can’t buy food?
Is this what we want going on in our schools? If you can’t trust your schools to nourish your children physically, do you think that they are capable of nourishing them intellectually or do you think that this father’s response was blown out of proportion?
How would you react if this is was your son or daughter? Let us know in the comments section below.