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Houston-area mentor pays delinquent lunch accounts for more than 60 kids

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HOUSTON -
In his 10 years as a mentor and tutor, a local man has always done his best to meet the needs of the students in his life.

That's exactly what Kenny Thompson did Monday when he learned that some children at Houston's Valley Oaks Elementary School who had negative balances on their lunch accounts were receiving different lunches than the other kids: cold cheese sandwiches instead of a full tray of food.

He was spurred to take action after hearing last week that dozens of Utah students, whose accounts were delinquent, had their lunches taken and thrown away.

"I'm like, 'Wow. I know that's probably a situation at my school, and the school my son goes to, and the other schools I mentor at.' So I came in and inquired about it," Thompson said.

He not only inquired about it, Thompson learned that many of the kids were already on reduced lunch. Children whose parents couldn't afford the meals that cost just 40 cents a day. He took $465 of his own money and zeroed out the delinquent accounts of more than 60 kids.

"These are elementary school kids. They don't need to be worried about finances," said Thompson. "They need to be worried about what grade they got in spelling."

Thompson says many kids he knows with negative accounts forgo the lunch line altogether to avoid embarrassment. But that's bad for education as physicians have linked classroom performance with proper nutrition.

Thompson believes he made a difference when he made the decision to help those students.

"When I left the building knowing that they were getting fed, they didn't have that stress," said Thompson. "The best money I ever spent."


http://m.click2houston.com/news/houstonarea-mentor-pays-delinquent-lunch-accounts-of-more-than-60-kids/-/16714936/24297388/-/13jsb1v/-/index.html
by on Feb. 5, 2014 at 7:40 PM
Replies (41-50):
Outspoken.Mime
by Platinum Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 8:17 AM

LOL.  Yeah I know, and I know my case would be the rare exception.  I would just have given the money back to go on some other kid's account.

And yes he did learn a lesson.  He doesn't overspend anymore, hasn't for a couple years.

Quoting copasetic1:

 There is no school in this country that would tell him anyone's names. Even if they would, he shouldn't have to track all the parents down and ask them their particular circumstances One the other hand, individual parents could contact the school and tell them not to bail their child out. You taught a good lesson though. That's what good parents do, they don't scream or punish or shame, they teach their child about real life. I'll bet he thanks you to this day, Mama! And I am not being snarky, I genuinely applaud you. Felt I should explain that, seeing as this is cafemom.

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Nice of him.  But I think he should have asked the parents.

When my son was younger I gave him enough money for the main lunch entree and a snack every day.  He would overspend on crap, and I wouldn't give him anymore money.  Having those cheese sandwiches 3 days a week because he was irresponsible taught him a valuable lesson.

I wouldn't have wanted someone bailing him out.

 


Outspoken.Mime
by Platinum Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 8:21 AM

Well that is why you have to teach them.  My son knows it now, and he is now in 8th grade.  Hasn't overdrawn his lunch account this year at all, and last year less than a handful of times.

I have no doubt most kids don't know how, because their parents don't bother to teach them or give them consequences for irresponsible spending.

And you don't have to be convinced, it worked for my son, and I really don't care beyond that.

Quoting OneToughMami:

I am still not 100% convinced middle school age children understand money management. I worked in a middle school. I mean hell, I am not 100% on high schoolers understanding money management either. 

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Yeah we had that in grammar school when I expected him to have less self control.

In middle school though, he needed to learn to make better decisions.


Outspoken.Mime
by Platinum Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 8:23 AM

Yep, I agree with you.

Quoting Anonymous:

My sister is very low income and her kids get reduced lunch.  They are never negative with their lunch account because she prioritizes that.  She doesn't have a smartphone just a basic cellphone and no landline. She doesn't have cable, internet or luxuries of any kind.  Her kids do without many of the things so many kids do have but they have everything they need and are well loved. In a year it will be different my sister will be an RN and making a lot more money but for now she sacrifices so her kids are well fed.

Some choose cigarettes, alcohol, internet, cable and other shit over feeding their children and that is just unacceptable.  I am glad this man did this but those kids accounts will be negative again and the kids will be eating cold sandwiches but mom will have her nails done and her hair will look amazing.  Some people suck.

Quoting cjsmom1:

You're right! I don't understand how a parent doesn't make it a priority to make sure their child has lunch money

Quoting happy-go-lucky: That was really cool of him, but doesn't really solve the problem. If the kids parents could not or would not pay for lunches before they are not likely to start paying now and in a few days the accounts are going to be negative again.




OneToughMami
by Ruby Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 9:19 AM
And you know there's a larger percentage of adults in all income brackets who fail miserably with money management. Their kids will never get it because it's not taught in school. Why can't people just do nice things for the kids with dumb parents?

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Well that is why you have to teach them.  My son knows it now, and he is now in 8th grade.  Hasn't overdrawn his lunch account this year at all, and last year less than a handful of times.

I have no doubt most kids don't know how, because their parents don't bother to teach them or give them consequences for irresponsible spending.

And you don't have to be convinced, it worked for my son, and I really don't care beyond that.

Quoting OneToughMami:

I am still not 100% convinced middle school age children understand money management. I worked in a middle school. I mean hell, I am not 100% on high schoolers understanding money management either. 

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Yeah we had that in grammar school when I expected him to have less self control.

In middle school though, he needed to learn to make better decisions.


Outspoken.Mime
by Platinum Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 9:51 AM

Where did I say they couldn't?  Yeesh...way to draw a conclusion of your own from nothing that I said at all.

What this man did was nice, absolutely.  These kids will end up like their parents if we don't address the core issue though, which is a lack of knowledge and skill concerning money management.

This example was for MY SON alone.  I said in my other replies it likely did not apply to 99.9% of the kids he did help.  I do wish they would teach life skills in school as well as academics, however.


Quoting OneToughMami: And you know there's a larger percentage of adults in all income brackets who fail miserably with money management. Their kids will never get it because it's not taught in school. Why can't people just do nice things for the kids with dumb parents?

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Well that is why you have to teach them.  My son knows it now, and he is now in 8th grade.  Hasn't overdrawn his lunch account this year at all, and last year less than a handful of times.

I have no doubt most kids don't know how, because their parents don't bother to teach them or give them consequences for irresponsible spending.

And you don't have to be convinced, it worked for my son, and I really don't care beyond that.


Anonymous
by Anonymous 5 on Feb. 6, 2014 at 9:55 AM
He zeroed out their accounts, that is very sweet... but who is going to continue to help when their parents get negative again?

And why cant these "embarrassed" kids being lunch from home?
OneToughMami
by Ruby Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 9:56 AM
No where in what I said that you quoted did I say anything about your son. I was talking about the other 99.9% apparently...you kind of missed that.

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Where did I say they couldn't?  Yeesh...way to draw a conclusion of your own from nothing that I said at all.

What this man did was nice, absolutely.  These kids will end up like their parents if we don't address the core issue though, which is a lack of knowledge and skill concerning money management.

This example was for MY SON alone.  I said in my other replies it likely did not apply to 99.9% of the kids he did help.  I do wish they would teach life skills in school as well as academics, however.


Quoting OneToughMami: And you know there's a larger percentage of adults in all income brackets who fail miserably with money management. Their kids will never get it because it's not taught in school. Why can't people just do nice things for the kids with dumb parents?



Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Well that is why you have to teach them.  My son knows it now, and he is now in 8th grade.  Hasn't overdrawn his lunch account this year at all, and last year less than a handful of times.

I have no doubt most kids don't know how, because their parents don't bother to teach them or give them consequences for irresponsible spending.

And you don't have to be convinced, it worked for my son, and I really don't care beyond that.


Outspoken.Mime
by Platinum Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Ok I am too tired this morning to argue with a tree stump.  I know you weren't talking about my son, which is why I explained that my stance on him helping applied ONLY TO MY SON and didn't apply to the other 99%

Lord in heaven.

Quoting OneToughMami: No where in what I said that you quoted did I say anything about your son. I was talking about the other 99.9% apparently...you kind of missed that.

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Where did I say they couldn't?  Yeesh...way to draw a conclusion of your own from nothing that I said at all.

What this man did was nice, absolutely.  These kids will end up like their parents if we don't address the core issue though, which is a lack of knowledge and skill concerning money management.

This example was for MY SON alone.  I said in my other replies it likely did not apply to 99.9% of the kids he did help.  I do wish they would teach life skills in school as well as academics, however.


OneToughMami
by Ruby Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 10:00 AM
Sorry you see yourself as a tree stump and cannot understand we were clearly talking about the same fucking thing.

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Ok I am too tired this morning to argue with a tree stump.  I know you weren't talking about my son, which is why I explained that my stance on him helping applied ONLY TO MY SON and didn't apply to the other 99%

Lord in heaven.

Quoting OneToughMami: No where in what I said that you quoted did I say anything about your son. I was talking about the other 99.9% apparently...you kind of missed that.



Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Where did I say they couldn't?  Yeesh...way to draw a conclusion of your own from nothing that I said at all.

What this man did was nice, absolutely.  These kids will end up like their parents if we don't address the core issue though, which is a lack of knowledge and skill concerning money management.

This example was for MY SON alone.  I said in my other replies it likely did not apply to 99.9% of the kids he did help.  I do wish they would teach life skills in school as well as academics, however.


Outspoken.Mime
by Platinum Member on Feb. 6, 2014 at 10:03 AM

Ok that was stupid.  Unless you are me, that retort makes no sense.

Quoting OneToughMami: Sorry you see yourself as a tree stump and cannot understand we were clearly talking about the same fucking thing.

Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Ok I am too tired this morning to argue with a tree stump.  I know you weren't talking about my son, which is why I explained that my stance on him helping applied ONLY TO MY SON and didn't apply to the other 99%

Lord in heaven.

Quoting OneToughMami: No where in what I said that you quoted did I say anything about your son. I was talking about the other 99.9% apparently...you kind of missed that.



Quoting Outspoken.Mime:

Where did I say they couldn't?  Yeesh...way to draw a conclusion of your own from nothing that I said at all.

What this man did was nice, absolutely.  These kids will end up like their parents if we don't address the core issue though, which is a lack of knowledge and skill concerning money management.

This example was for MY SON alone.  I said in my other replies it likely did not apply to 99.9% of the kids he did help.  I do wish they would teach life skills in school as well as academics, however.



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