A third-grader in Alabama was sent home with an extremely embarrassing stamp on his hand after forgetting to bring lunch money to school.
The 8-year-old, who attends Gardendale Elementary School in Gardendale, was humiliated when he was forced to wear an “I Need Lunch Money” stamp for all his classmates to see for half the school day.
Jon Bivens, the boy’s father, explained to ThinkProgress that he thought the stamp was completely ridiculous, especially since the school has so many other discreet ways to communicate with parents.
- “I can’t think of one logical reason why anyone would stamp on a note on a child’s arm,” he said. “We have so much technology and multiple ways to communicate.”
As it turns out, the entire school district brands children with stamps when their accounts hit $0, even though Bivens claims his son still had $1.38 to spend before he hit that mark.
- “I personally had never heard of [the stamping policy] before my son came home with it,” the angry dad told ThinkProgress. “My biggest focus was the fact that the schools herd these kids like cattle. Stamping notes onto their arms is just one step closer to school becoming an assembly line.”
While many parents may agree with Bivens, Gardendale Principal Laura Ware says it’s unfortunate that he decided to contact a reported from AL.com before reaching out to the school.
- “It is extremely unfortunate that this happened to that student,” said Nez Calhoun, director of public information for Jefferson County Schools. “I feel for the parent, but we didn’t know anything about it until we saw the story in the paper.”