Principal Fired for Protecting Poor Kids From Humiliation (VIDEO)

principalYou would think that school administrator who was trying to save poor children from humiliation would be a good thing. Not so in Lafayette, Colorado. Elementary school principal Noelle Roni says she was fired for fighting against a policy that required kids to get their hands stamped if they didn't have enough money in the lunch account.

“The kids are humiliated. They’re branded. It’s disrespectful. Where’s the human compassion? And these are little children,” she said of the policy. It's not hard to see her point of view. This is exactly the kind of embarrassing personal detail that can leave a child feeling ashamed, dejected, and the prey of merciless bullies. We all know, cruel kids are not above poking fun at another child's financial situation, especially when it's clearly stamped on their bodies.

It is so easy to damage the fragile feelings of school children. No one wants to be different for any reason.  Roni says it was her job to fight for them -- and she's right. She had several conversations with her bosses (the board for the charter school) but they were incensed that she would refuse to uphold their rules and fired her.

It's as though the system wants these kids to be maligned and bullied. It lacks the kind of human compassion we all should expect from the places we send our kids to learn and develop.  Fortunately, Roni has many parent supporters who believe she was the victim of politics. They are fighting along with this brave, wonderful principal to get her job back.

What do you think about this "hand stamp" policy?

behavior, bullies, school lunch

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adamat34 adamat34

What's tool came up with this asinine idea??? She fired for what?? Its a damn stamp nothing more.

Lets hope the parents have more sense and fight this.

nonmember avatar mel

I'm from Colorado and this breaks my heart. I hope they do follow her advice, why do we need hand stamps anyway? Stamp a paper geeze. Some kids have sensitive skin issues too! Better yet get a new updated system. I was poor and in grade school decades ago and I never got a hand stamp or was humiliated... so update your system ! Or go backwards if you guys can't get your heads out of your a$$!

Bobbie Scherzer

I'm glad she fought against this policy.  I hope she gets her job back.  We need more people like her in education.

lmh84 lmh84

What happened to sending a not home or a phone call? Or even a text or email?

work4... work4mickey

What purpose is the stamp supposed to serve? It's not a mark in the schools records that let's them know to collect.

I'm not for protecting children from the realities of their situation. I grew up poor. I remeber getting teased about my payless shoes, that I didn't have the lattest trapper keeper, and that I thought luxuries that other kids took for granted were too expensive. It made me a stronger person and taught me who my real friends were.

But this policy serves no practicle purpose. It's not a record keeping system. It seems the only purpose IS to embarrass the children. Children are aware of other kids situations, even of it is not stamped on their hands. Even though we cannot (and i belive should not) protect them from every little embarrassment that comes with being poor, we should not set out to embarrass them.

k8edid k8edid

This comes from the schools changing over to the "lunch card" system - your parents put money into your account and then you just "charge" your account for it. And then when they get low, they leave it to the kids to let the parents know. Our school gives the kids a slip to take home. Guess how often they get stuffed into desks and lockers. What they need to do is send the parents an email so things don't get lost in transit. And so things like THIS don't happen. Stamping the kids' hands is just ridiculous.

choas... choaspartyof4

Wow. It is just sad that they would stamp kids hands and make them stand out like that to begin with! At the schools here its a lunch account, they punch in their account # to pay. No one would know if a child gets free or reduced lunch. That's how it should be, those kids shouldn't be marked to stand out. Children can be cruel and I can only imagine the teasing that goes on with those stamps.

Jespren Jespren

wow, talk a out over blowing the situation! hurt their tender feelings? protect 'poor' kids from humiliation? CALTRAP! It's nothing more than an easy reminder that parents are sure to see that they forgot to add money to an account, just as likely to happen to a family with no money problems than with money problems. Actually, probably a lot *more* likely to happen to a family with no money problems because a poor family is carefully thinking 'i have to take out that $20 for the lunch' and will notice if they suddenly have an extra $20 if they forget but a well off family can easily forget that kind of thing. Either way, all this is is a 'note home' that the kid can't lose! There isn't anything 'humiliating' about that-unless you first tell all the kids that it's supposed to be some kind of big humiliation by taking it so seriously you as principal refuse to bow to sense and get yourself fired! And the school should send home emails? certified mail? It's not the *school's* job to see that the kids are fed, it's the blasted *Parent's* job. A handstamp to remind them as opposed to letting the kid go hungry is already taking on more than enough responsibility for parents who apparently can't remember kids tend to eat three times a day.

mande... manderspanders

Amen,Jespren... you're the only one with any common sense commenting here.

nonmember avatar lexi

Im glad someone is finally standing up to this "policy". I grew up poor in colorado and in a school that put a big neon blue stamp on my hand if my acct was short even a damn penny! Because I was of lower class then most the kids in my school I was the outcast since I didnt have name brand clothes or new shoes every month or any of the lavish stuff my class mates had. I remember the first time I got a stamp I had kids pointing at laughing at me all day. I took the bus home and had kids throwing things at me laughing calling me the poor kid. When we got off the bus they would throw rocks at me or if they had it food while the other kids said things like dont feed the animal or your just feeding the homless. Kids are hateful. Sending home a letter or calling the parents something ANYTHING is better then labeling the kids. I mean kids already do enough labeling adults do not need to encourage it!!

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