TACOMA, Wash. — A lingering issue is carrying on into the new school year for Tacoma Public Schools. 

For the second year in a row, Washington state has outlawed lunch shaming. Now, schools are seeing the unintended consequences from that with even more student lunch debt.

Tacoma Public Schools has about $130,000 in lunch debt.

Seattle has more than $46,000 in lunch debt.

Student Lunch Debt
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Tacoma Public Schools staff are urging parents to help with this problem.

A spokesperson for the school district said parents who qualify should be signing up for free or reduced lunch. To qualify, a family of four will need to make $47,638 or less a year and a family of eight would need to make $80,346 or less a year.

Parents can also sign up for "Lunch Money Now" to load money onto their child's lunch account online.

Tacoma parents can also put a limit of their child's ability to charge by emailing NutritionServices@tacoma.k12.wa.us.