SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Parents say about 50 elementary students in Salt Lake City had their school lunches thrown out because money was owed on their food accounts.

The lunches costing about $3 were taken from the children on Tuesday as they arrived at a pay station after cafeteria workers had given them the food.

Parent Erica Lukes said the action was humiliating and demoralizing for students.

The Salt Lake City School District said the move came after it realized a lot of students at Uintah Elementary owed money for previous lunches.

District spokesman Jason Olsen said cafeteria servers were not able to see who was in debt until lunches had already been given to students in line.

He said the lunches were thrown out because they couldn’t be served to another student. Students whose lunches were taken away were given fruit and milk.

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10 thoughts on “SHAME: Lunches Taken From Utah Students Who Owed Money

  1. October on said:

    I spoke to a cafeteria manager who did give students food although the parent did not pay. She felt the student had the right to eat no matter what the circumstances. When she asked to be reimbursed for the lunches that were eaten, the parent told her I didn’t ask you to do it. She stopped giving students free food until the negative balances were settled. I’m not saying you should not help when help is needed but parents need never to look a gift horse in the mouth.

    • I said it. on said:

      Exactly! My son’s teacher paid for him one day. I hadn’t checked the balance. When I found out I was upset with “myself” for letting his account run out. I sent the teacher her money the next day and put plenty of money in his account. No one is owed a handout. Feeding children is the parents responsibility.

  2. Stephanie on said:

    SHAME ON THAT SCHOOL INCLUDING THE SCHOOL DISTRICT. AMERICA IS A VERY WASTEFUL COUNTRY. WHY NOT HAVE A BACK UP PLAN, SOMETIMES THE PARENTS JUST DON’T HAVE THE EXTRA MONEY FOR LUNCH. THE SCHOOL SHOULD HAVE PROVIDED A SIMPLE PB&J SANDWICH AND MILK TO PUT SOMETHING IN THOSE KIDS STOMACH.
    SHAME ON THEM.

  3. If you sent the parents a note, then the next would be to pull the students out BEFORE they go through the line. Elementary means K-5, these kids have no access to money and know nothing about they system, this is just disgusting.

  4. the Timekeeper on said:

    That generality is no excuse for taking food out of the mouths of those kinds. When we were in school we were way, way too hungry to throw our lunch away. Dinner time was too far away!

  5. I said it. on said:

    You need to visit school cafeterias where students go through the lines, take one thing off the tray, and throw the rest away, if not the entire tray. Perhaps, we need to count all of the bottles of milk the kids throw away. Nothing free is appreciated. The students are trained to believe that it’s magically paid for and that someone owes them something. It could have been handled better, but I’m sure the parents had been notified prior to the situation.

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  7. the Timekeeper on said:

    This is something we would usually see in third world countries. If this just happened somewhere in Europe, the Middle East we would be yelling for sanctions and sending reporters from CNN over there to do a photoe shoot and say thing like “Oh the Horror” Yes, the horror right here in the U.S.

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