Shawnee Mission schools revise meal policy to avoid 'lunch shaming'

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Shawnee Mission School District will no longer serve students who owe lunch money an alternate meal, effective in November.

The Board of Education approved the change to Board Policy EE: Food Service Management on Monday night.

The revision means students whose families owe money on their meal account will be served a regular lunch rather than the alternative meal, which in many districts can consist of a peanut butter and jelly or cheese sandwich.

Policies such as the one SMSD is changing have been criticized across the nation, with many calling them “lunch shaming” and saying they unfairly single out students whose families may be short on funds for school meals.

The new version of the SMSD policy will be in effect for the 2018-19 school year, allowing about a month for implementation. 

It will be reviewed by the Board of Education no later than April 30, 2019. 

Print this article Back to Top