Mom Says Her Son Was “Stamped” Because He Ran Out Of Lunch Money

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A second-grade student at a school in Phoenix, Arizona, was given a stamp on his inner wrist with the phrase “Lunch Money” to inform his parents that he needed more funds in his account. His mom is livid and said it was a humiliating experience for her child.

Tara Chavez, whose son attends Desert Cove Elementary, said she noticed the mark when she picked her child up from school last Thursday.

He said, ‘Hey mom, I got stamped,’” Chavez recalled.

Chavez said the inside of her son’s wrist said “Lunch Money” in capital letters.

My kid’s really weird about stuff like that, so I asked if he was given a choice by the lunch lady and he said, ‘No, she just grabbed my wrist and put the stamp on.’”

“I was surprised,” she said. “Normally I get a slip in his folder when he needs more money.”

Despite the stamp, Chavez said that her son told her that he was given a lunch and that when she checked his account online, there was still 75 cents remaining in it. Her son was embarrassed, which is what bothered her most about the incident.

He was screaming and crying the entire time,” Chavez said. “He was humiliated, didn’t even want me to take a picture of it.”

Chavez emailed Desert Cove principal Stacey Orest about the stamp and this was the response in part:

[The staff member in the cafeteria] doesn’t want the students to be embarrassed either so she is supposed to ask them if they want a stamp or a reminder slip,” the principal wrote.

A friend of Chavez, Juan Fortenberry, posted the photo of the boy’s stamp on his Twitter account, where it soon went viral.

I think there’s a better way to communicate the message than stamping a child with the word ‘Lunch Money,’” Chavez said. “There’s a billion other ways you could do it that would be better than that.”


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