April 5th, 2013
10:30 AM ET
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Sorry, kid. No money, no lunch.

Students at an Attleboro, Massachusetts, middle school went hungry this week, if they had a negative balance on their pre-paid lunch cards.

Five cents of debt was enough for cafeteria employees at the Coehlo Middle School to instruct kids at least one day this week to dump out the food they would have normally eaten, CNN affiliate WJAR in Rhode Island reported.

About 25 children left the lunchroom with empty stomachs, said Whitson's Culinary Group in a statement. The company runs the school's cafeteria.

Parents were appalled. So was the principal. So was Whitson's.

"I told them this is bullying; that's neglect, child abuse," said parent Jo-An Blanchard.

Read - No noon meal for kids in debt at middle school

Previously:
Study finds school breakfast is a key to future success
New program strives to get more lower-income students to eat breakfast
Tom Colicchio talks childhood hunger
Hungry at the holidays

More on the politics of school lunch

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Filed under: Food Politics • Hunger • School Lunch


soundoff (One Response)
  1. Paula

    This story is not shocking to me. My daughter is now a sophomore, however, when she was in second grade she was denied lunch because I owed $9. I didn't know that I owed...because the school mails home notices when a child owes via USPS and my second grader forgot to tell me. When I called to complain the head of the cafeteria said "You wouldn't send her to McDonald's without money would you?" At least this in your story the culprits are a for profit company (not excusable, but more understandable)...this woman worked directly for the school and administration knew that this was the policy. Disgusting! How any person can deny a child lunch is beyond me.

    April 5, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
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