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Ohio boy had school lunch taken away on birthday due to negative balance

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The family of an Ohio grade-schooler says he was humiliated by staff who took away his birthday lunch in front of his friends, because of a lunch-debt policy, according to WEWS.

“The lunch lady didn’t say anything, took away my cheesy breadsticks and sauce, put them over there, and took out bread, cheese on bread out of the fridge and put it on my lunch tray,” Jefferson Sharpnack said.

Sharpnack came home on August 30 with a note stating his account was in the negative, something Green Local Schools administrators say is protocol. “Students receive multiple means of communication whenever their account become in the negative,” according to Asst. Superintendent Alana Niemiec.

But what happened the following Tuesday on Jefferson’s ninth birthday left his grandmother in tears.

She said her grandson was humiliated in front of his classmates.

“You would take the food off of a tray, you can’t reserve it you’re going to throw it away and not feed the child? That doesn’t make sense to me,” his grandmother said.

According to WEWS, Diane Bailey said after her grandson came home with the notice of negative funds in his account, she spoke with a school administrator to straighten out the issue. Her grandson’s enrollment in the free and reduced lunch program had not been finalized yet.

The Superintendent of Green Local Schools says policy changes are already being considered. Krista Seals, who is the principal at Green Primary Schools, said the lunchroom staff has been addressed following the incident.

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