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New Mexico Becomes First State to End School ‘Lunch Shaming’

Bullying[1] from one s peers is bad enough, but when it comes from adults at school, the damage[2] can be especially devastating. And in an emerging and unsettling trend, schools across the nation are shaming students who are unable to afford their cafeteria lunches.

In one case that gained national attention, a third grader in Alabama was sent home[3] with an ink message stamped on his arm that read, I need lunch money. The student s father was both stunned and confused after finding the stamp on his son, calling it a form of bullying and shaming. Prior to this incident, the school would call or email parents to alert them of a low lunch payment balance, so the father was understandably baffled. And shockingly, this happens to be one of the milder instances of shaming a young student over lunch money. Some schools have forced students to work off[4] their unpaid lunches by washing cafeteria tables during school hours. In other cases, cafeteria workers took away students food[5]. Perhaps the most shocking account of lunch money bullying occurred at a middle school in Virginia. In this particularly strange case, a student who took a carton of milk one that he was entitled to was accused of theft and actually handcuffed[6] by the school s security officer in front of his peers.

Fortunately, some states are taking important steps to put such lunch shaming to an end.

New Mexico[7] recently became the first state to legally prohibit these policies. With Governor Susana Martinez recent signature, the Hunger-Free Students Bill of Rights will require schools to communicate with parents or in the situations that warrant it, enroll students in assistance programs. This legislation will include any school that receives government aid for student meals, whether public or private. Does this mean schools should stop trying to make parents pay off their children s meal debts? Of course not. However, there s no need to humiliate young individuals. After all, students are not at fault for coming up short. Children do not choose to live in difficult financial circumstances, and it is cruel to treat them as if they did. Shaming children and their low-income families is absurd and arguably Dickensian. Hopefully New Mexico s new law will encourage other states to follow suit. Both Texas and California are currently working on similar bills that would also do away with humiliating cafeteria policies.

Photo Credit: USDA/Flickr[8]

References

  1. ^ The Best Way to Stop Bullying Is to Teach Empathy (www.care2.com)
  2. ^ damage (www.care2.com)
  3. ^ sent home (www.care2.com)
  4. ^ work off (www.huffingtonpost.com)
  5. ^ students food (www.cbsnews.com)
  6. ^ handcuffed (www.care2.com)
  7. ^ New Mexico (www.kansascity.com)
  8. ^ USDA/Flickr (www.flickr.com)

Governor names retired businessman, former Razorback basketball …

FAYETTEVILLE — Tommy Boyer, a retired businessman who starred for the Razorback basketball team in the 1960s, has been named to the 10-person board of trustees for the University of Arkansas System. Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Tuesday announced the appointment of Boyer, 76, to the board overseeing six universities and seven two-year colleges. Board responsibilities include the approval of tuition rates at campuses within the UA System. Boyer’s appointment expires March 1, 2027. He replaces Reynie Rutledge, chairman and chief executive officer of First Security Bank, appointed in 2013 after the board resignation of John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods Inc.

Boyer, a salesman for 26 years with photo imaging company Eastman Kodak before launching his own business, said he will keep the best interests of students in mind while on the board.

“I’m always concerned about the number of students in a class. I’m always concerned about the cost of getting an education,” said Boyer, a volunteer and donor supporting the UA-Fayetteville campus. He said university leaders must “be very, very careful that the money is spent in the right places and the amounts are in the right proportion.”

Hutchinson, a Republican, last year appointed to the board his policy director, Kelly Eichler, and a two-time GOP nominee for governor, Sheffield Nelson. While a student at the Fayetteville campus, Boyer earned a bachelor’s degree in business and athletic honors as a guard on the basketball team.

“My GPA was a 2.7, and I was proud of every little piece of it,” he said.

[EMAIL UPDATES: Get free breaking news alerts, daily newsletters with top headlines delivered to your inbox[1]]

His career flourished in Amarillo, Texas, first at Eastman Kodak then with the founding of his company, Micro Images. He said he lives full time in Fayetteville after years of going back-and-forth between Amarillo and Arkansas. Named to the Arkansas Business Hall of Fame in 2013, Boyer and his wife, Sylvia, also a UA-Fayetteville graduate, in 1999 established Boyer Fellowships, which provide $18,000 yearly to top UA-Fayetteville business students with financial need.

Boyer served as a co-chairman for a $1.046 billion UA-Fayetteville fundraising effort known as Campaign for the Twenty-First Century. He joins David Pryor, a former governor and U.S. senator, as board representatives living in Northwest Arkansas. State law requires that two members of the board come “from each of the four congressional districts” in the state, and last year only Pryor lived in the 3rd Congressional District, which includes the largest cities in Northwest Arkansas.

But Hutchinson’s office has said the law has no residency requirement, so Little Rock attorney Morril Harriman, who served for 16 years as a state senator from Van Buren near Fort Smith, could represent the area. Rutledge lives in Searcy, located in the 2nd Congressional District that includes Little Rock, where three board members — Harriman, Eichler and Nelson — reside, according to the UA System. The board last year approved the addition of what are now called UA-Pulaski Tech, a campus in North Little Rock that’s one of the state’s largest two-year schools, and UA-Rich Mountain, a college in Mena. The schools officially became part of the UA System this year.

Metro on 04/12/2017

References

  1. ^ EMAIL UPDATES: Get free breaking news alerts, daily newsletters with top headlines delivered to your inbox (www.arkansasonline.com)

Governor names Boyer to UA board of trustees

FAYETTEVILLE — Tommy Boyer, a retired businessman who starred for the Razorback basketball team in the 1960s, has been named to the 10-person board of trustees for the University of Arkansas System. Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Tuesday announced the appointment of Boyer, 76, to the board overseeing six universities and seven two-year colleges. Board responsibilities include the approval of tuition rates at campuses within the UA System. Boyer’s appointment expires March 1, 2027. He replaces Reynie Rutledge, chairman and chief executive officer of First Security Bank, appointed in 2013 after the board resignation of John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods Inc.

Boyer, a salesman for 26 years with photo imaging company Eastman Kodak before launching his own business, said he will keep the best interests of students in mind while on the board.

“I’m always concerned about the number of students in a class. I’m always concerned about the cost of getting an education,” said Boyer, a volunteer and donor supporting the UA-Fayetteville campus. He said university leaders must “be very, very careful that the money is spent in the right places and the amounts are in the right proportion.”

Hutchinson, a Republican, last year appointed to the board his policy director, Kelly Eichler, and a two-time GOP nominee for governor, Sheffield Nelson. While a student at the Fayetteville campus, Boyer earned a bachelor’s degree in business and athletic honors as a guard on the basketball team.

“My GPA was a 2.7, and I was proud of every little piece of it,” he said.

His career flourished in Amarillo, Texas, first at Eastman Kodak then with the founding of his company, Micro Images. He said he lives full time in Fayetteville after years of going back-and-forth between Amarillo and Arkansas. Named to the Arkansas Business Hall of Fame in 2013, Boyer and his wife, Sylvia, also a UA-Fayetteville graduate, in 1999 established Boyer Fellowships, which provide $18,000 yearly to top UA-Fayetteville business students with financial need.

Boyer served as a co-chairman for a $1.046 billion UA-Fayetteville fundraising effort known as Campaign for the Twenty-First Century. He joins David Pryor, a former governor and U.S. senator, as board representatives living in Northwest Arkansas. State law requires that two members of the board come “from each of the four congressional districts” in the state, and last year only Pryor lived in the 3rd Congressional District, which includes the largest cities in Northwest Arkansas.

But Hutchinson’s office has said the law has no residency requirement, so Little Rock attorney Morril Harriman, who served for 16 years as a state senator from Van Buren near Fort Smith, could represent the area. Rutledge lives in Searcy, located in the 2nd Congressional District that includes Little Rock, where three board members — Harriman, Eichler and Nelson — reside, according to the UA System. The board last year approved the addition of what are now called UA-Pulaski Tech, a campus in North Little Rock that’s one of the state’s largest two-year schools, and UA-Rich Mountain, a college in Mena. The schools officially became part of the UA System this year.

Metro on 04/12/2017

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