Riverside School Board talks lunch payment

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Riverside School Board met Nov. 6 to discuss lunch payment for students and clarify some things about students getting different lunches whenever their lunch debt hits the limit. They also discussed homecoming activities for the week.

Riverside Superintendent Jeff Priest addressed the $25 limit on student lunch debt. Currently if a student exceeds this limit in lunch debt, in theory they are given a different lunch than the “hot lunch” normally purchased. However, Priest said the district has been given a sum of money to be used when the $25 limit is reached to pay for a regular lunch for students. Priest also said that whenever students are given the alternate lunch, the food is put on trays just like the regular lunch so students do not feel singled out by receiving their lunch in a bag.

“When we did the story, since September, we had only given out 14 alternate lunches, so it was made out to believe we were just 'everydaying' it and starving kids. Fourteen was all we had given out in a month’s time,” Priest said.

“If a kid didn’t eat that day it was his or her choice,” High School Principal Matt Ziegler added.

Priest also said that whenever the district purchased Chrome books for the entire high school, grades 7-12, it cost $85,000. If the district fed every child that currently pays in full for lunch or is reduced, for one year it would cost $275,000. Priest says when you look at those figures it puts it into perspective.

“It doesn’t seem like much when you are going through the line because it’s two dollars or whatever but when you multiply that by every kid it adds up quick,” Ziegler said.

In other business Ziegler mentioned some students in the EAST class were going to honor veterans between the junior high and senior high boys games on Friday.

“We’ve kind of rotated, one year we had a Veteran’s Day program at the school and that was last year…we are on this rotation now, we honored them between ball games because what we found out is some of the gentlemen and ladies work who would like to come to the program during the day,” Priest said.

One hundred ninety-two ceiling tiles have been changed out from the lobbies and bathrooms at the gym in Caraway. The bathroom has been repainted and the flooring has been replaced.

“It looks really good. We aren’t completely finished, but we are hoping to be within the next two weeks,” Priest said.

The board also accepted the resignation of Shelby Lee, part time aid.

The board approved to add a policy for sick days to reimburse teachers who have retired and been rehired. The policy states “if the retiree is cleared by the Arkansas Teacher Retirement system to return to work and the retiree has accumulated sick days they will be reimbursed at the current substitute pay scale at the time of voluntary resignation.”

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