Parents Defend Lunch Lady Put on Leave After School Lunches Seized From Kids in Debt
There’s an update to an outrageous story we shared with you last week about a Salt Lake City elementary school throwing away students’ lunches for not having enough money in their prepaid lunch accounts.
Now, parents are standing up for a lunch lady and her supervisor at Uintah Elementary School, who they say were used as scapegoats for a district-wide policy gone wrong. The two employees were put on paid leave after dozens of students were forced to go hungry.
The father of a third grader at the school, Kevin Conway, said this morning on Fox and Friends that his daughter’s lunch was thrown away right in front of her and her friends when she didn’t have enough money.
He blames the district, not the school, for the terrible policy. In the past, Conway said he was notified if his daughter’s account balance was low. “This year we haven’t received anything like that, and you know, you have to question why did they switch systems, who benefited from this?”
Principal Chelsea Malouf said in an email to parents: “What happened last Tuesday was not standard practice at Uintah Elementary. I am sincerely sorry that students were humiliated and food was wasted. […] Many of you have asked about Shirley [the lunch lady] and have asked me to share your sympathy and appreciation with her. I spoke with her again last night and did just that. Like you, I am anxious for the investigation to be completed.”
Conway said he wants the district to apologize to the affected children and hopes that the person who is responsible will be held accountable.