Minnesota school district apologizes after video shows workers throwing away hot lunches for students with outstanding debt

A public school in Minnesota issued an apology after video showed cafeteria workers at a high school throwing away hot meals of students with outstanding debit and replacing them with cold lunches.

The Richfield School District issued the apology after the video surfaced Monday showing workers disposing of the lunches for students who had an unpaid debt of $15 or more, according to NBC News.

“Our nutrition staff inaccurately and inappropriately implemented alternate lunch,” Richfield Public Schools Superintendent Steven Unowsky told local NBC affiliate KARE 11 Tuesday.

{mosads}“There are multiple failures we had in this situation and our job is to fix it. First and foremost [in] the way we treated our kids. We should never leave kids with the feeling they had from the experience,” he added.

The school said it was a mistake that a student was told in front of their peers that they owe money for unpaid lunches. The students should instead be informed about any unpaid debt from a social worker or a school guidance counselor.

Unowsky noted that a hot lunch should never be taken off a student’s tray, even if they have lunch debt.

Richfield High School Principal Latanya Daniels also apologized for the incident and said the school will do better in the future.

“One of the things we can do is model failure with grace. We absolutely failed in this situation and our team is working to try and rectify mistakes we made,” she told the local news outlet.

The school district will reportedly be responsible for paying a $20,000 unpaid lunch bill at the end of the academic year.

Along with the apology, the school district included a link for people to donate funds that go toward students who are unable to pay their school lunch debt.


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