Parents upset with RPS over lunch money website switch

Posted at 6:36 PM, Sep 05, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-05 19:01:30-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -- During the first week of school, some Richmond Public Schools students ran into problems in the cafeteria.

Amy Howard said she was surprised when Albert Hill cafeteria workers told her sons that there was no money on their online accounts.

Howard and more than 160 other parents added money to their children's Payment Plus account this week, only to find out a day or so later the Richmond Public Schools is no longer using that website vendor. Others parents were upset after the website was shut down.

RPS officials said the problem happened because the school system switched to a new lunch account website vendor.

Spokesperson Felicia Cosby said that when the school system updated its lunchroom computer point-of-sale component mid-summer, they discovered the vendor's software wasn't compatible.

Cosby said the new vendor will offer enhanced features the district thinks parents will love when the new online payment option goes online at some point in October.

Additionally, Cosby said the money parents paid this week through the old online vendor is accounted for and being added to the new system. That info is being manually transferred to the and students accounts are being crediting with the proper balance.

Cosby said parents should not worry about students missing a meal.

Cosby also said that the school system wants to apologize to parents for any inconvenience that they experienced because of the ordeal.

In the meantime, parents who pay online and want to continue doing so should fill out a pre-payment form. That form can be downloaded from the school system's website or can be picked up at their child's school. Be sure to include cash or a check with that form.