student lunch debt

Community raises $85,000 to eliminate student lunch debt, who would otherwise receive cheese sandwiches

Georgia’s City Schools’ student lunch debt of $85,000 was paid off by the concerned community.

School lunch debt is a significant issue in the United States, with nearly 30 million students unable to afford meals.

The average school meal debt is $180.60 per student, and it causes shame and humiliation for students who cannot afford meals. This burden also places a strain on school districts that have to pay off the debt.

Georgia’s City Schools of Decatur announced on February 1, that kids who owe money for lunch would henceforth receive an “alternate meal” consisting of a cheese sandwich and milk.

Elementary children would receive the milk after reaching the $9.75 mark, while middle and high school students would receive the sandwich after accruing a $10.50 lunch debt. The rule came about as a result of $88,000 in overdue lunch debt.

student lunch debt

The news about the cheese sandwich went viral, leading to outrage among many who believed children were being shamed for a situation beyond their control.

SIMILAR: Read about how the local community bailed out an Austin restaurant and their Free Fridge Program.

A nationwide network called Goodr has come together to combat food waste and eradicate world poverty.

Goodr CEO and Atlanta-area resident Jasmine Crowe-Houston set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise money to pay off the school district’s debt, ensuring every child receives a nutritious meal.

The community rallied together as news of the “alternative meal” spread like fire on social media. And to Crowe-Houston’s astonishment, the GoFundMe page raised the necessary funds to cancel the school lunch debt within 48 hours.

Crowe-Houston expressed her gratitude and excitement to the community that rallied together and made the achievement of the goal possible.

However, she learned that a corporate foundation had already stepped in to eliminate the school lunch debt.

The Goodr CEO offered the money to the district to provide a fund for future lunch-debt problems, but the donation was declined.

The cheese sandwich story serves as an example of a community standing up to provide essential nutrition for children, but it raises serious questions about whether school lunch debt should exist in the wealthiest country in the world.

Maya Bennett