Best Persons

We’re back on school lunches again, but rather than talking about lunches being thrown away or honoring black history month with fried chicken and watermelon, we’re talking about something good. Well, something partially good.

Kenny Thompson was worried about the elementary school kids he tutored and mentored in Houston, Texas. So he went in to check whether they were getting the proper nutrition. [...]

What he found disappointed him: Dozens of students were on “reduced” lunches, receiving cold peanut butter and jelly or cheese sandwiches instead of the full hot meals they used to receive, all because their parents had fallen behind on lunch payments that amounted to mere 40 cents a day.

So Thompson took action. He forked over $465 of his own money and zeroed out the balances on over 60 students’ accounts.

Good: Kenny Thompson, today’s Best Person.

Bad: Children being fed cold cheese sandwiches because they don’t have 40 cents.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that our education system is often the butt of a joke. How can we expect kids to pay attention in class and ace their horrible standardized tests if we won’t even feed them properly? Or as Thompson said “these are elementary school kids. They don’t need to be worried about finances. They need to be worried about what grade they got in spelling.”

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  • muselet

    Kudos to Kenny Thompson. But …

    If we were serious about wanting our children to do well in school, every child, regardless of family income, would be eligible for a free (yes, Righties, that means paid for by the taxpayers!, go ahead and squawk) breakfast and lunch. We’d loosen the standards for nutritional assistance, as well. Instead, we nickel-and-dime kids and their parents.

    Since we’re not serious about it—and the loudest complainers about academic performance seem interested in students solely as a source of revenue for privatized schools—we see awful stories like this one and the one out of Utah and the ones before that from all over the country.

    Schoolchildren should not be undernourished and humiliated for something their parents may or may not have done.

    Shameful.

    –alopecia

    • Christopher Foxx

      “Education is the silver bullet. Education is everything. … School should be incredibly expensive for government and absolutely free of charge to its citizens just like national defense.”

      • muselet

        I disliked the show, but I can’t argue with that speech.

        –alopecia

        • Christopher Foxx

          It was full of speeches like that. A bit dewey-eyed and unrealistically idealistic at ties, but it was still a worthwhile watch. We;d be better off with more Presidents like Bartlet.