For students in Texas’ Royse City Independent School District, lunch sometimes looks like nothing more than a turkey sandwich, a piece of fruit and a carton of milk. That’s what students are served if they have outstanding student lunch debt.
Kids who have money in their accounts can enjoy the hot food at the cafeteria. Without, they have rationed meals, different from everyone else’s.
Royse City First United Methodist Church gives its Christmas Eve collection to charity each year. Last year, they gave half to this local elementary school’s lunch fund. In 2018, they wanted to go above and beyond, so their pastor, Chris Everson, proposed they direct their donations toward the entire school district.
Adi Bryant, Royse City ISD’s chief communications officer, told NBC that about 40 percent of the district’s 6,000 students are on the free or reduced-price lunch program. She says the church offered to help indebted families without prompting, handing the check over without fanfare around Christmas.
The donations from the 200-member congregation totaled $10,000, clearing all of the students’ lunch debt and seeding their accounts for the rest of the year.