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Independent investigation called for into tossed school lunches

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Posted at 10:20 PM, Feb 18, 2014
and last updated 2014-02-19 00:20:34-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- It's been weeks since dozens of Uintah Elementary School children were humiliated after their school lunches were taken away, and thrown in the trash.

Since then, The Salt Lake City School District has implemented changes to its school lunch guidelines, saying no child will ever go without lunch again.

Tuesday night the president of the Salt Lake Board of Education called for an independent investigation into what happened at Uintah Elementary when nearly 40 students’ school lunches were either taken or thrown away.

The District is hiring Squire & Company, based out of Orem to do an audit, which means  complaints, letters, anything that relates to school lunches and what happened at Uintah will have to be turned over for this audit.

"I've decided to do something I've never done before and that’s to exercise my authority as a board president and to initiate an independent investigation into the circumstances," said Kristi Swett, the President of Salt Lake City Board of Education.

The district implemented changes to its school lunch guidelines last week, promising no student would ever be denied a full meal again, but parents say more needed to be done.

Parents want answers as to why Shirley, the beloved lunch lady, who is now back at work after being put on leave took the fall for the lunch debacle.

"I think as parents we are just really hopeful the answers come out as to why meals were taken away in the first place, why Shirley the beloved cafeteria worker was blamed and why there's there has been so much confusion throughout it," said Ashley Hoopes, a parent.

There's no timeline on how long the audit will take but the board is meeting in two weeks to discuss what this outside investigation finds.