By Jeff Simpson
H/T Our friends at Monologues of Dissent for this great piece on the Waterford School District.
Agreeing among themselves that "the FDA standards are going beyond where they should," the conversation is largely hijacked by one Dan Jensen, who argues early that "there shouldn't be any federal lunch program" and cites his "Libertarian standpoint," evoking the specter of Milton Friedman, to defend the idea that since he "doesn't have the right" to ask someone to pay for someone else's lunch, he somehow does have the right to deny local taxpayers of federal funds they support with their own tax dollars. While they cite a decline in lunch participation and an increase in throwing food in the trash, board members betrayed their real reasons for opting out of the program in fairly short order (emphasis mine - see the full video and story here):
The Board was split on the need to offer a free and reduced program to low income students in the district. Dan Jensen stated he did not feel it was the district’s responsibility to pay for anyone else’s lunch (video 1 at 4:34). Jensen the went on to describe that WGSD could in the future determine the family income levels that qualify a student for free and reduced lunch and what they would be given to eat if they did.The board is, in essence, robbing local taxpayers of the federal funds THEY help support because of a personal "belief" that students who can't afford to eat don't deserve to eat.
Board member Dawn Bleimehl stated that she hoped that any free and reduced lunch offered by the WGSD “looks the same” as the lunch served to other students (video #2 at 3:57). Dan Jensen went on to disagree that a free or reduced lunch need to look the same and that as a youngster (in RUSD) he was not bothered by standing in a special line while waiting to receive his free or reduced lunch. He agreed it would matter to some students in WGSD, but felt that was the price those students have to pay for receiving a lunch paid for by others (video #2 at 4:40). Unfortunately, the district would then stand to lose many tens of thousands of dollars in Title funds because it would be much less likely to identify and document students from low income households.
Once again, Heather nailed this important topic perfectly(go there and read the whole post). she also sums up exactly how we got into this mess:
This is precisely what happens when anti-child, anti-education people are elected to represent our schools. When politics and personal opinion trump the educational success and welfare of our children, something is broken beyond repair.
YOUR local elections MATTER!! Vote Tomorrow!
PS: Here is a quick video Dan Jensen, the board member who does not feel it is his job to take care of the kids he represents(h/t QC)!!!
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
Matthew 25:35-4035 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’