Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Update on The Lunch Room Scandal at Uintah Elementary

Screw Nutritional Guidelines for
Students, you ain't eatin'
As a follow up to the overreaching Godfather like powers the Nutrition Office has at the Salt Lake City School District (which we posted about last week), the School Board held their public meeting yesterday to discuss the bullying of 40 kids into coughing up lunch money.  The Salt Lake Tribune gave us a nice breakdown of this breakdown in basic department management.

According to Kelly Orton, the Nutrition Department Director, the district switched to a new billing system since, "it was difficult to get info from the old system and the new system is better at keeping costs down and is faster in processing payments."  Well apparently not!  We can't even get a list of who hasn't paid without giving the kids a lunch and then throwing it away.   The sunk costs in the negative publicity alone makes the old system sound like a Retina Macbook Air.  Not to mention they have now admitted many parents did not receive notices that they were even in the negative.  The old system had automatic email alerts for parents; apparently the new system didn't automatically transfer these settings and parents had to go in and setup e-alerts again.  Mr. Orton admittedly said, "the new system requires more effort to set that [e-alerts] up -- something of which parents were not aware."  In addition they now know many parents were not alerted or not properly alerted in the first place.  Most likely they failed to pin the bill to the kids shirt when they went home and mark them with a "Scarlet N" for negative.

Who created this system?  Seriously!  One of the first questions I would have asked when evaluating new software would have been, "Can we print a list of students who need to pay?"

if they don't take the kids lunch, 
they will be fired!
It also appears school nutrition officers are given absolute power to make discussions in the school since the principle wasn't even consulted on the decision to send kids to debtors prison with milk and an apple.  School Board members Michael Clara and Rosemary Emery cite a history of bullying from the school district to adhere to their evil commands which has lead us to this horrible event.  

Either they obey the Godfather or pay the price and I think this issue should go all the way to the top starting with the Superintendent and then the Nutrition Director.  They run their departments and they need to know what is going on in the field instead of playing candy crush behind doors.  Someone has given these orders to the foot solders to act this way.  I would expect more heads to roll on this national issue.


jonengland1226 said...

Our school was having some problems with this as well. We would have our head cook ask kids where their money was while everyone was standing there. I knew as a teacher which kids were behind, which I shouldn't because it is a privacy violation. I cannot know which kids are on free and reduced lunch. I cannot know which kids are behind in fees. That is not information I need to fulfill my job. Luckily our principal saw it happening and now we send a note home with students to give to parents. I just don't understand the reasoning behind harassing a student for money that their parents are responsible for. The kids aren't the ones who are supposed to provide for themselves.

BenJoe Markland said...

Thanks bringing this up, I think have a serious lack of common sense when it comes to these ideas and we need to focus on how to improve our schools and help these kids not make them feel worse.

Seeing my one year old grow I can see how fragile a kids confidence can be and these kind of things can destroy them.