Good morning, today is the first day of the school year, and I thought it would be interesting to talk about whether schools should provide free lunches. This has been a rising topic,
especially with it getting so much media coverage. For example, most recently, when the young boy raised money to pay all of the school-lunch debt.
I just learned that in some places students are "shamed" by their peers for not being able to afford lunches or even having excessive debt. I know at my school they posted the debt that students owed (with their student ID's) and there were some students that owed more than one hundred dollars! I didn't think much about schools providing free lunches until recently but I do think it's a problem.
Schools and the government should provide free lunches not only so that we can destigmatize students who can't afford lunches, but so that kids don't go without eating. Yes, it's only about a dollar or two per meal, but when there are 180 days in the school year, the true costs becomes increasingly clear.
I know that there are already programs implemented that help students from low-income households, but this should really be a universal privilege for all American students K-12. Nobody should ever have to worry about paying something that is a basic human right.
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