BILLERICA (FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) – The Billerica School Department is offering students enrolled in its tax-funded free lunch program a chance to win an iPad.
According to the Boston Herald, the bid is not sitting well with Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester).
"My office is looking into this," Tarr told the newspaper. "I think it's completely inappropriate that this school system has reduced an important nutritional program to the status of a game show. They are, in a way, using kids to leverage funding. Chapter 70 dollars are scarce and should be based on real need. To the extent that there's a mentality by some that welfare is something to be gamed, this kind of thing reinforces that."
Over the summer, the Billerica schools have spent about $5,000 soliciting families to sign their children up for the free lunch program with a contest to award two kids iPads, a student from grades K-5 and another from 6-12.
Billerica Schools Superintendent Timothy Piwowar said he stands by the free lunch iPad raffle.
Read more: Boston Herald