Kind 3rd Grader Pays Off Classmates' Lunch Debts With Allowance Money

Ryan knew he wanted to do something about kids going hungry.
Kylie Kirkpatrick

Kylie Kirkpatrick said her son Ryan was visibly upset in May when he watched a story on the news about a 5-year-old who was denied a hot lunch.

A third grader in California wanted to help his classmates out by paying their outstanding lunch debts

Kylie Kirkpatrick said her son Ryan was visibly upset in May when he watched a story on the news about a 5-year-old who was denied a hot lunch because she couldn’t afford it. 

“It made him really sad,” Kylie told “I thought about it for a little bit and said, ‘What do you want to do so that doesn’t happen again?’”

The mom called the district’s food service provider to find out if it turns away kids who don’t have money for lunch. While the provider said that while it doesn't turn anyone away, the kids end up accruing a lunch debt that they have to pay at the end of the year.

Kylie said the debt for Ryan’s third grade class was $74.50.

“When I told him, he said ‘Wait a minute, we owe money? We’re just kids,’” Kylie said. 

Ryan decided to take nearly all of the money from his savings account, which he earned by doing chores, to pay the entire debt. 

“He brought the receipt into the office and said, 'Can you tell my friend’s mom they don’t owe any more money?’” Kylie said. “I wasn’t surprised and I thought it was sweet."