In almost all school districts students will eat lunch. Some pay every time, some go into debt and pay it off every so often. Well what happens if they can’t or have not paid it off? Well Rhode Island decided that they will be serving students Sunflower and jelly sandwiches until the debt is paid off. The state law is that they must provide a lunch for students, yet does not specify the type of lunch rather it hot, cold or even the size.
This new rule is for Warwick Public Schools from Kindergarten to 12th graders. Apparently this was posted by the school district,“If money is owed on a paid, free, or reduced lunch account a sun butter and jelly sandwich will be given as the lunch choice until the balance owed is paid in full or a payment plan is set up,”. At least 70 percent of families in the state get free lunches or reduced lunches based on their income. Even some of those families are complaining that they have certain charges for small items that were not included in the free or reduced lunches such as milk.
Other parents are proving the point of being scared or knowing that their child would get bullied or made fun of by just getting the jelly sandwich. Since the other children would see that’s all they would get. Normally all of that information would be private for obvious reasons. The children most likely did not do anything for them to just get a jelly sandwich, because they might not be in charge of the money income, or spending.
Other parents are proving the point about if a sunflower butter and jelly sandwich is a healthy filling meal? A pediatric nutritionist said, “A sunflower butter and jelly sandwich is really not a balanced lunch,”. She even said eating the same sandwich every day is not good for you and will not give you the nutrients your body needs to get through the day. For some kids the lunch they get at school is the only meal they get. If it was a Friday, all they would have is a jelly sandwich to hold them off for the weekend. Some parents are asking for facts about how much it would cost to just give them a chicken patty or some sides along with it.
After all the population that the district got from making this rule, they released that the school district owed $40,000 of lunch payments. That large payment was not only happening to just Warwick. The same thing was happening all over at many school districts, and the debt has increased a bunch over this school year.
Warwick refused a 4,000 dollar check from a local restaurant. The restaurant owner said she has put a jar for donations in her restaurant just to raise money. After Angelica Penta the owner of the restaurant became public about being refused, the school district knew they needed to go on record and tell the public why they could not take the money. Their reasoning- “they didn’t want to be responsible for allotting which students the money benefited,” according to www.nbcnews.com. Meaning they could not pick certain students to pay of the debt off. They did say that Angelica should create some sort of program that gave specific details on how students could get the money to pay it off and expand it to other businesses. As of right now the new rule is still in use, and doesn’t seem like it’ll budge.