Albuquerque Public Schools must come up with a plan to cover $168,000 in unpaid lunches.
The district says most of the debt is from families not filling out free or reduced lunch applications. At one time, students with lunchroom debt would get a partial meal, but a new bill requires students to be given a full meal whether they have money or not.
“With the new law that came about, we have to feed every student, and we definitely want to do that, but it also has cost us some money,” said Sandra Kemp, APS Food Services Executive Director.
The senator who sponsored the bill says this shouldn’t be happening.
“The district needs to get their hands around that and find out why that’s happening,” said Sen. Michael Padilla.
The district may use a portion of the new public education budget to cover the debt.