Our daughter is in 3rd grade at Jefferson Elementary School, and we (the Bishins family) would like to end the school year with no families in debt for school lunches. No child or family should be in debt to a school, and no one should have this hanging over their head at the start of summer. While we believe the whole system needs to change (i.e. free school breakfast and lunch for everyone), eliminating the debt is one way to make a small change immediately.
We want to raise at least $2,500*, which will wipe out the entire Jefferson Elementary School lunch debt. We have an anonymous donor who matched the first $500 in donations! If you're inspired to give, please give generously if you can! Any level of donations is sincerely appreciated. We'd love to show the families of Jefferson we support them!
If you can't contribute, please consider sharing! Just having more people having this conversation about school lunch debt is awesome - we've already been reached out to by other parents wanting to know how to find out the school lunch debt at their own child's school! UPDATE: After talking to Nutrition Services, we think one of the best ways to prevent this situation again next year is to really spread the word that everyone should apply for free and reduced meals BEFORE school starts or immediately when school starts. A lot of the school lunch debt in the district is incurred during the first 30 days of school when students who are eligible for free or reduced lunch are actually being charged full price for lunches. We'll follow up soon with some things our family will be personally doing to help get the word out!
The nitty gritty: Our family is independently raising money to eliminate Jefferson's school lunch debt. The school is aware of the fundraising effort and we're keeping them updated! Once we reach $2,500 or the end of the school year, the funds will be withdrawn and 100% sent directly to Nutrition Services at the Tacoma School District, to be applied to Jefferson's outstanding school lunch debt. We'll post an update when that happens! Anything raised over the $2,500 will be gifted to another Tacoma school, via Nutrition Services, for the same purpose. We are so excited about how much love this effort is getting - our tentative plan is to keep the Go Fund Me open through the summer to hopefully keep raising money and paying off the debt at other schools as well!
*We got an update from Nutrition Services that the Jefferson debt today was over $2,300, and will be a bit more by the official end of the school year.