Parents Shocked by Letter Saying Kids Can Skip the School Lunch Line if They Pay Extra

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Standing in line is one of the first skills we’re taught in school. Any school child knows the “no cuts” rule is inviolable. That’s why a group of Sarasota parents were shocked this week to receive a letter from their kids’ school saying that their kids could skip to the front of the lunch line if their parents paid extra.

According to Channel 7 News, some parents were appalled. The letter came in orientation packets for the new school year. The letter offended a lot of parents.

The idea of paying to go first in the lunch line is gross. Schools shouldn’t have VIPs or first-class boarding. Classmates are supposed to be equals. Paying for a kid to skip the lunch line is the sort of thing that would breed entitlement in a kid. If they don’t even have to wait in the lunch line, what other rules shouldn’t apply to them?

Everyone hates the lunch line.

Nobody wants to wait in the lunch line. It’s long. It sucks. If you are stuck in the back, you might not even have time to finish your food properly. Lunch lines can be awful. But allowing kids to buy their way out of it is gross and a terrible example for the kids themselves.

Even the principal was shocked by the letter.  Principal Bryan Andrews said he was not aware of the letter, and that the school was committed to being inclusive of all the children.

In the end, the letter was traced back to the PTA, which claimed the letter had been sent as a “clerical error.”

That’s a pretty weird clerical error, though. You can’t write a “kids who pay more get to skip the lunch line” letter into existence as a clerical error.

The Parent-Teacher-Student Association took the blame for putting the letter in orientation packets. They said it was included by mistake and would not be sent out next year.

But why do they even have that letter?


Sending the letter may well have been a clerical error. But someone had to have written the thing. $20 says it’s a PTA parent whose kid was complaining about the lunch line. That’s a valid complaint. But the solution is not, “Can I just pay to let my kid cut the line?”

The point of the PTA is to advocate for all the kids, not just one’s own. It’s a good thing the principal shut it down and that other parents were offended and not cheering, “Where do I sign up?”

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(Image: iStockPhoto / monkeybusinessimages)