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DOWAGIAC, Mich. (WBND) ? A Michigan student says he was humiliated when school officials took away his lunch because there wasn?t enough money in his account. After his mom heard what happened, she took matters into her own hands.

?It was really embarrassing, especially in front of the whole class,? said Dominic Gant, a junior at Dowagiac Union High School.

On Friday, Dominic was served his normal cafeteria lunch, but just as soon as he was served, his lunch was taken away.

Dominic had an outstanding balance of less than $5 in his lunch account. His high school, like many other schools, has a policy that denies a hot lunch, and sometimes any lunch, to students who can?t pay.

?I was appalled that he was denied lunch and his lunch was taken out of his hands over $5,? said Amanda Keown, Dominic?s mom.

She was so upset her son was sent home hungry, she immediately contacted the school. They told her the balance doesn?t matter, even if it?s a small amount.

?She asked me where is the cutoff, where do you draw the line with the charges, when do you say no more? And I said there shouldn?t be a line,? says Keown.

So she took matters into her own hands. She didn?t want to see another student be sent home hungry, so she paid off every student?s outstanding balance in the entire high school.

?I realize I didn?t have to do that but I don?t want another kid going through what my son went through,? said Keown.

source

 

video News at http://news.yahoo.com/video/mom-pays-entire-schools-outstanding-202400474.html

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Well, at my school they let us go in the red for 3 lunches, and then we get a peanut butter sandwich after that, but now they're changed the policy and we have to have the money or else we don't get lunch. I don't see what's wrong with not being able to get commercially available food because you can't pay for it, but I guess the mom was nice to pay off the over due accounts.

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Can't watch video, but... any clarification on the "taken away" wording? Because if they gave it to him, then took it back, they can't give it to another student. If they made a kid go hungry so they could throw his food away, I'm going to go punch something.

 

(that being said... high school... they aren't babies anymore and most can probably make at home or earn money for their own lunches by then)

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The mom in the video kinda looks like she is on something...

 

Anyway, stupid as hell for any school to do this.

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I took my water pistol to school, in case they got any ideas about not feeding me. :shiftyninja:

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WTF! I'm with Charisma on this one.

The school could have called social services or some other power that be, to get this matter corrected, making a school kid go hungry...?

Heroic mom for what she did though

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This school, and others that do this, are taking major local ridicule for this practice. Expect CYA changes.

Fact is, a lot of kids are already dropping out of the school lunch programs because the "healthier" food choices pushed in by Michele Obama suck so bad the kids won't eat them.

Which begs the question, how can they be healthier if the kids would rather go without lunch or smuggle in snack foods, candy bars etc.?

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When I was at school, kids got a free lunch if they couldn't afford to buy their own. It's the other way around here it seems.

 

Hmmm. 

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Well done mom!

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This school, and others that do this, are taking major local ridicule for this practice. Expect CYA changes.

Fact is, a lot of kids are already dropping out of the school lunch programs because the "healthier" food choices pushed in by Michele Obama suck so bad the kids won't eat them.

Which begs the question, how can they be healthier if the kids would rather go without lunch or smuggle in snack foods, candy bars etc.?

If the kids were raised properly, eating real food instead of crap, you wouldn't have that problem.

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If the kids were raised properly, eating real food instead of crap, you wouldn't have that problem.

You can raise them as proper as you can, but as soon as they spend more time out than in your control level changes.

In the case of many schools they are within a block of the nearest 7/11, a party store or McDonalds. Jr High and HS kids will just go off campus for "lunch."

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You can raise them as proper as you can, but as soon as they spend more time out than in your control level changes.

In the case of many schools they are within a block of the nearest 7/11, a party store or McDonalds. Jr High and HS kids will just go off campus for "lunch."

And if they have the money to do that, more power to them. But saying the schools shouldn't have healthy food because the kids would rather eat junk is stupid.

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Healthy food isn't bad, what's bad is you have kids that have been fed and are still being food food that 90% fat, sugar and salt.

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He had $5 in his account and that wasn't enough to afford lunch so they didn't give him any. Then his mum pays for every students outstanding balances?

 

Doesn't really make sense, what outstanding balances is there if they don't give food once you run out of money in your account?

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Yeah back when I was at school (in the UK) if your family was poor then you were given free school lunches. I believe that programme has recently been extended to cover all kids under a certain age to encourage healthier eating, poor family or not.

 

America will monetize anything it seems.

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Idiotic to leave kids hungry. Lunch should be paid for by the school(fees)/government. School cafetaria shouldn't be money machines.

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Idiotic to leave kids hungry. Lunch should be paid for by the school(fees)/government. School cafetaria shouldn't be money machines.

In case you haven't noticed, schools don't really seem to actually be about education anymore in the US  :(  Universities have been more about money than investing in the future for years, and now that attitude is trickling down to lower and lower ages. It's sad. I really hope there's a swing back to a more reasonable direction soon.

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Yeah back when I was at school (in the UK) if your family was poor then you were given free school lunches. I believe that programme has recently been extended to cover all kids under a certain age to encourage healthier eating, poor family or not.

 

America will monetize anything it seems.

Shhhhhhh lets not make this about the free or reduced lunch program for the poor now.  Since that is not what it is.

Back when I was in school that happened as well.  Back when my kids were in High School, that happened as well (that was 2 years ago).

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wow, just... wow

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Why do adults that should know better do this?

 

It's a form of bullying!

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When I was at school, kids got a free lunch if they couldn't afford to buy their own. It's the other way around here it seems.

 

Hmmm.

That's how it works in the UK. Back when I was at school, if you genuinely could not afford it, you could apply for free school meals, which got you either a bag containing a sandwich, fruit and a drink, or ?2 (I think) daily credit in the canteen.

Moreover, if anybody forgot to bring lunch or money to pay for lunch (the canteen was cash back then, none of this pay-card malarky) the office would just give you a token worth ?2 for you to go buy lunch, and pay it back the next day.

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It does seem counter intuitive, especially over such a trivial amount. I can see it from the schools point of view too, as a broken precedent could cause long-term problems. That said, there are more logical ways around it. Why not follow the UK university model. If you have any outstanding debts to the university (including a trivial 20p library fine) they prevent you from graduating. That could be adapted to preventing students from sitting examinations through to using school sports facilities, going on trips and bans from being on-site after core hours. There are more pro-active ways to deal with it.

The kid can settle up next week or the mum can after pay day (if there is a genuine financial problem) and the world keeps on turning.

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^pft, look at you, being all logical and junk

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leave to docm to make this a political issue. tell me, what does mrs obama have to do with a school in michigan taking a kid's lunch away from him? wait a sec, i'll answer that for ya, docm. ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

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anyone notice that this has been happening a lot more since the whole new lunch program started that Michelle Obama pushed for? I don't mean for this to be political, but I have been hearing about this take the lunch away thing a LOT more since they changed the lunch standards and how the gov gives funds to schools for lunches and stuff..

 

it almost feels like someone is trying to make an issue out of it now for political reasons?

 

because when I was in school if you didn't have money, you still got a lunch be it a much cheaper one or you went into debt on your lunch plan and paid later. It was that way up until about 2009 when suddenly there was all these stories including my old school district taking lunches away for kids who didn't have money in their accounts...

 

 

Edit: didn't see DocM said something already, I don't feel that my comment was in the same light as his though

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