To give DS no lunch?

(75 Posts)
AtSea1979 Wed 05-Oct-16 07:15:40

After day 1 of year 7 DS had spent twice as much as the agreed amount for his lunch. I can't afford that and he words with DS and DS decided he wanted packed lunch anyway (unrelated to his telling off).
Anyway DS said he has no friends on packed lunch and every was on school dinners so he ended up sitting with year 8s who never spoke to him etc so I reluctantly agree he could go back on school dinners but keep spending to a minimum like take drink and snack and buy a main meal and dessert.
This seemed to be going well until yesterday. When he bought toast, drink, pizza, main meal, dessert and two more drinks.
Shall I send him with a jam butty or tell him he's had his quota? wink
In all seriousness though I can't afford this so what's the solution? There doesn't seem to be an option of setting a limit on the account.

Shyposter Wed 05-Oct-16 07:17:50

Our school can cap the amount students spend per day at your request. Would that be an option?

00100001 Wed 05-Oct-16 07:18:00

Can you do the money top ups daily until he can control himself?

Shyposter Wed 05-Oct-16 07:18:55

Oops sorry. Didn't read to the end. I'd still have a word with the school though. I'd be surprised if there were no restrictions at all.

lougle Wed 05-Oct-16 07:18:58

Is there a minimum top up? Can you top up an exact amount each day?

00100001 Wed 05-Oct-16 07:19:03

So, only out in £1.50 (or whatever amount) the evening before.

And yes talk to school about daily limits!

ConvincingLiar Wed 05-Oct-16 07:19:07

Ask the school? You certainly can't give him unlimited credit every day if that's how he's going to spend it. Ywnbu to insist on packed lunch when he's blown the budget. If the consequence is that he can't sit with his friends maybe that'll make him think twice next week.

ButtfaceMiscreant Wed 05-Oct-16 07:20:02

At school I had a weekly amount that, if it went by Tuesday tough. Could you do that for one or two weeks? Send him with a drink and fruit in his bag but if he spends it all on Monday it might teach him to budget better?

yorkshapudding Wed 05-Oct-16 07:23:31

Talk to the school, they will have come across this issue before. But also make sure your DS doesn't have reasons for overspending he's not telling you. I work in a school and have known kids secretly buy food for hungry friends whose parents weren't providing for them, kids who try to 'buy' friends with food because they feel socially isolated and kids who have been coerced by bullies into buying them food.

But yes, if not any of the above YANBU to insist on packed lunches from now on until your DS gets the message.

OreosOreosOreos Wed 05-Oct-16 07:24:03

DSS gets a set amount which pretty much allows for one school meal a week, the rest of the time he's packed lunches (a compromise as the school dinners are more expensive).

In the beginning he too abused the system by e.g buying a cake/milkshake/crisps on extra days, or buying way to much food in one go.

We had a conversation about it and I explained that unfortunately, as he'd used up all his money for the month in one week he wouldn't be able to have school dinners for the rest of the month.

That was in year 7, he's now in year 9 and he's never done it again, so I'd say it was lesson learned!

Gallopingthundercunt Wed 05-Oct-16 07:25:10

I would tell him that he has £x for the week and wave him off with a smile. If he blew it on crap in the first two days then he would have to go hungry for the rest of the week.

In reality I would be anxious that he was hungry, but by year 7 he should be learning to control his spending.

Penfold007 Wed 05-Oct-16 07:29:25

Are you sure he's buying the food for himself and not being bullied or trying to buy friendship?

DoloresVanCartier Wed 05-Oct-16 07:36:06

I'm having the same issue with DS!! First year and even though he has breakfast at home, takes in a snack for break (x2), he's spending over £25 per week!! Other parents are telling me that their DC are spending about £3.60 a day for their lunch and break and that includes them buying a snack for break.
I feel my DS is nipping off to the casino and gambling at lunchtime!! I'm sure he is fed up with hearing that for £1 per day I was able to buy shepherds pie, coleslaw, chips and beans, a juice, a Belgian biscuit and 2 packets of meanies EVERY day for 6 years!! AND HAVE CHANGE for the penny tray after school!

ClashCityRocker Wed 05-Oct-16 07:39:13

Set amount for the week.

After that he's on pack ups. It's tough shit if he can't eat with his mates...

But yes, do make sure he's not being bullied or pressured into buying.

Artandco Wed 05-Oct-16 07:43:21

Set an amount. Send snacks also so he isn't buying drinks and basic snacks daily as well

I would set a budget for meals per day based on what he can get for example £3 if that buys a full meal. £15 a week

Also would give x amount pocket money at the end of each week. Say £10. Whatever over £15 in the week he goes over, deduct from he pocket money.

Groovee Wed 05-Oct-16 07:51:02

My kids put their money on their cards daily rather than weekly, so of they decode to stay in school that day, they top up their cards. If he's not learning, it will be packed lunches daily.

Blu Wed 05-Oct-16 07:52:32

They all go mad at the beginning of Yr 7, and then settle down to a routine.

But either do daily top ups, or leave him to learn to budget his weekly allowance the hard way.

NoahVale Wed 05-Oct-16 07:59:07

just work it out on a weekly basis, let him know that, and if he goes over his target, by friday he needs to make his own sandwiches?

MrsMcMoo Wed 05-Oct-16 07:59:08

Could you maybe send him with extra drinks and snacks from somewhere cheap, and tell him he's only allowed to use the payment card for the main meal? I wouldnt stop him sitting with his friends in year 7, he's only been there 3 weeks, and really needs to bond with his peers. Otherwise he may end up isolated and unhappy and you don't want that. My son has a daily limit on his card, I'd investigate further, as yours might do as well.

NoahVale Wed 05-Oct-16 07:59:52

mine have always had sandwiches, including going through sixth form/college.

MrsMcMoo Wed 05-Oct-16 08:01:25

Sorry, just reread that. To clarify, I didn't mean to imply you were 'stopping him sitting with his friends', just that this seems to be the unintended consequence of him having packed lunch!

Galdos Wed 05-Oct-16 08:35:12

What Yorksha says: DD2 openly told me she took a double packed lunch sometimes so as to give half to a poor friend. I discreetly checked this excuse, and it was true. There was a rota of friends who ensured the poor girl always had lunch.

DD2 prefers a packed lunch because it means she doesn't spend her entire lunch break queuing, and she gets to gossip with her mates. Also it's (usually) cheaper.

FleurThomas Wed 05-Oct-16 08:52:23

Can you give a set amount everyday? I know it's more hassel but if he has a small amount of money maybe he'll manage it better?

RB68 Wed 05-Oct-16 09:01:49

How amazing making sure the child without was fed.

I am having the same problem at the moment as well - several conversations later we have agreed to taking a snack in. By themselves items are not expensive but some days she is spending 4.50 at the moment, part of the problem seems to be poor pricing information in the cafe area...We will see how the rest of the week goes.

FeliciaJollygoodfellow Wed 05-Oct-16 09:20:36

I think at 12 after a month in school he should have more of a handle on it, especially as you've had words more than once. I would explain to him he gets a weekly allowance and will have to make himself a sandwich if he spends it all in the first couple of days. I certainly wouldn't be checking up after him and making him a packed lunch. Is that the done thing nowadays because it wasn't when I was at school! If you weren't buying anything you were eating a squashed sandwich you'd made ten seconds before heading out the door!

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