A dad owed the school £1.75, so they refused to give his son a meal

(22 Posts)
NicholasTeakozy Wed 12-Jun-13 09:43:47

BBC link

Yes, I know the dad should've taken better notice of the situation, but to refuse to feed a kid? Really? Disgusting.

Crowler Wed 12-Jun-13 10:38:44

I'm disgusted by the school.

I'm also a bit disgusted by the dad not taking more responsibility.

I'm a bit shocked that a human lunch server could do this to a kid.

SoupDragon Wed 12-Jun-13 10:39:33
CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 12-Jun-13 15:14:11

I'd forgotten to load up the lunch money in our school system once so they couldn't provide my son with a meal because it was technically 'overdrawn'. It happens and I've paid more attention since. However, like young Jacob in the article, my son is also a bit on the porky side so no harm done...

HarrietSchulenberg Wed 12-Jun-13 15:32:53

Parents were warned 3 times beforehand that their child would be refused a meal if they didn't pay up. Parents chose not to pay up therefore it parents who prevented their child from being fed.

As a governor I would have thought that the parent would be well aware of the school's policy on lunch payments. It sounds like someone is trying to kick up a storm to suit their own agenda.

Not fair on child, but the parent is at fault.

Branleuse Wed 12-Jun-13 15:39:24

big deal. Millions of children starve every day. Well nourished English kid misses lunch.

Pixel Wed 12-Jun-13 15:46:40

Mmm, bit over the top the father calling it 'horrific' that his son hadn't got a lunch on one occasion, especially as he's 11, not an infant. As an aside, £1.75 is a lot less than we have to pay!

They were warned three times, he was given an apple, presumably he had breakfast and dinner. Bad parents blame the school should be the headline.

Sirzy Wed 12-Jun-13 16:11:24

He was a governor so I am sure he knew the school policy. The school tried 3 times to contact him and he was fed an apple.

The parents should have made sure that they account was settled, or at least contacted the school to say "I can't pay at the moment but I will do so this evening" or whatever.

FadedSapphire Wed 12-Jun-13 17:35:14

3x over a week or that morning? Debt accrued on THAT day I think so no debt previously before this 'non' meal..
Think school out of order...
However, Dad now gone to Daily Mail so mebbe over reaction there...

janey68 Thu 13-Jun-13 07:11:18

'Father has a hissy fit and pulls his children out of school 'should be the headline.
Or actually, there's no headline to be made really- why is this news? The school contacted the parents 3 times and they didn't respond. Where should the money come from to pay for parents who default? Should the price of meals go up so other parents are subsidising the irresponsible ones?!

I expect the head teacher is glad to get rid of the nightmare parent who goes bleating to the national press over his own mistakes. How embarrassing for the kids too.

FadedSapphire Thu 13-Jun-13 07:20:29

There was no 'debt' til child tried to buy that meal. I understand just attempts to contact THAT morning. Also if you can bear linking to daily mail meal that day would put 'debt' to 90 pence. Yes, father over reacting BUT school uncaring jobsworths for 90p[or even £1.75].

Sirzy Thu 13-Jun-13 07:26:09

Problem is we don't know what history there is with this family, or other families, simply not paying. Something has led to the school having to have a zero tolerance approach and want all meals paying for in advance which I think is fair enough.

One day of having an apple for lunch is hardly the end of the world!

FadedSapphire Thu 13-Jun-13 07:42:00

You get the impression that the apple should not have happened as just kind hearted dinner supervisor....
Oh well.... all blown up hugely now...

NicholasTeakozy Thu 13-Jun-13 08:15:52

'Mr Lynn said: "I hold my hand up. I usually put £10 on at a time. That's my fault. But for them to take that course of action with my son seems incredible."'

The dad admits he should've stayed on top of the situation.

Another local head said:-

'"We don't use the same payment system. We wouldn't have refused the child a meal.

"We would have made all efforts to ensure they had something to eat."'

A kitchen manager at yet another school said:-

'"I would never let any of the children go out of that hall without food. I think it's pretty disgusting."'

The school say they tried to contact the parents three times before mealtime, which I take to mean that morning. Many parents work and are unable to answer their phone. But I forget, roolz is roolz.

Surely the correct solution would've been to feed the child and send him home with a reminder to top the card up? After all, the dad was a governor and hardly likely to want to rip the school off intentionally. When you see stories about teachers who complain that kids can't concentrate in class because they're hungry...

FannyMcNally Thu 13-Jun-13 08:25:11

The debt would have already been outstanding from a previous meal is the way I read it. Hence being contacted 3 times to clear it. The meal in question would have been another debt.

niceguy2 Thu 13-Jun-13 09:15:32

Personally I think they're both lacking common sense and the child is the casualty.

1) Dad feels his child going hungry is SO important and is that outraged that he complains to the press. You'd think if it were such an issue he'd have remembered to put the credit on.

2) School are being stupid for putting such a rule in place where a child goes hungry over such a small debt. Common sense dictates you'd let the child eat and only after you'd spoken to the parent and he refuses to clear the debt that you'd be forced into such an action.

Neither side have covered themselves in glory.

BarbarianMum Thu 13-Jun-13 12:25:32

<<School are being stupid for putting such a rule in place where a child goes hungry over such a small debt. >>

I agree. At dcs' school you are 'allowed' to build up to 3 meals worth of debt, after which your child would be given a hardship lunch (cheese sandwich plus apple). A parent who regularly failed to provide lunches would be referred to SS.

Crowler Thu 13-Jun-13 15:16:28

I just think it's weird that there's anyone who would be willing to enforce such a rule & deny a kid lunch. Unless the cafeterias are following some kind of super-draconian portion-measuring system, how would the school even find out?

If people's jobs are on the line, fair enough, but seems pretty reasonable that the people who serve the kids lunch would possibly form an attachment to them and find it hard to see them go hungry.

NiceTabard Thu 13-Jun-13 20:23:42

Academies are private and run for profit aren't they? So the company providing the lunches is interested in profit primarily. Hence not providing food if there is not the money to pay for it.

That's my guess anyway.

mikkii Thu 13-Jun-13 20:35:45

I know a mum who, due to a bereavement, forgot to pay her DDs dinner money. At the end of the of term, the usual letter was sent out with next terms costs, and a little note mentioning that this term was outstanding still. This was really an example of the school taking account of real life Impacting on a child.

Ogg Fri 14-Jun-13 14:38:35

Yes but this dad is not dead just a knob

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