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Dad Notices Daughter Spends Hours in School Kitchen after Classes & Hurries to Principal’s Office — Story of the Day

Roshanak Hannani
Jul 13, 2022
03:00 P.M.
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When Daniel Sutton noticed that his teen daughter, Faith, started coming home later every night, he decided to do something special. But when he went to pick her up after school, he discovered she was working in the school's kitchen, and he raged at the principal until they told him the surprising truth.

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"Honey, this is delicious. But you don't have to cook for us every night, especially when you're coming home late. What's keeping you at school anyway?" Daniel asked his 15-year-old daughter while they ate the spaghetti and meatballs she made for dinner.

His wife, Anna, died when Faith was ten, and since then, their nights consisted of too much takeout food because Daniel could barely microwave a frozen dinner. But that all changed recently.

Daniel ate the delicious dinner Faith cooked but worried about her. | Source: Pexels

Daniel ate the delicious dinner Faith cooked but worried about her. | Source: Pexels

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Daniel was pleased when his daughter started cooking but also felt terrible for her. She was taking on a role that she shouldn't. He was supposed to be the parent, and clearly, schoolwork was getting harder for her if she stayed in school until late only to return home and start dinner.

"No, that's not what I meant. Why is my daughter working in the kitchen? Is she getting paid?" he demanded to know, his hands at his waist as his temper rose.

"Oh, nothing. I just study at the library with my friends. It's better than being here bored and alone," Faith answered, swirling her fork on her plate. Daniel nodded, believing his daughter immediately, as she had never given him a reason not to trust her.

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He was also engrossed in the delicious food she made. The smell of tomato and oregano enticed his senses, and it might seem like a simple dish, but his daughter had inherited her mother's talent for cooking. "Well, just don't push yourself too hard. And honey, this dinner is delicious. You might even become a chef when you're older," Daniel commented.

"I don't know about that," Faith countered as they finished their food, drank their iced tea, and started to pick up the plates. Daniel wanted to probe further, but it didn't seem like his daughter wanted to talk anymore. There was something on her mind, but he had no idea what.

"I'll do the dishes, honey. Go relax," Daniel insisted, and his daughter nodded. He still felt awful about giving her this burden with his lack of cooking skills, but he was so proud of Faith for her maturity and desire to step up to help around the house.

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His daughter nodded quietly at his words and returned to her room, making him frown slightly. He wondered what was on her mind and worried once again about being a bad father. But what could he do about it?

He decided to surprise her with a trip to Six Flags. | Source: Unsplash

He decided to surprise her with a trip to Six Flags. | Source: Unsplash

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An idea came to his mind. He decided to surprise her with an outing to Six Flags Fiesta Texas, which was close to their hometown in San Antonio the following day. She wouldn't even have to miss school. He would pick her up after her classes were done, and they could have a great day together. She deserved it and hopefully, she would talk to him about what was bothering her.

***

Daniel was sitting in his car outside Faith's high school trying to reach her through her cellphone, but she was not picking up. He had no idea why. Maybe the library didn't allow them to use cellphones, which made sense. So he decided to park and go searching for her.

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As he entered the hallways of the school, he was reminded of his own youth and how he would've loved a day at Six Flags, which only got him more excited to take his daughter. He walked faster and saw Faith's homeroom teacher, Mrs. Grimes.

"Mrs. Grimes, do you know the way to the library? I'm looking for Faith. I have a surprise for her," Daniel explained, unable to hide his smile.

"The library? Well, you have to keep going straight, exit the building through the backdoor and pass the quad, and you'll see it. But Faith won't be at the library," Mrs. Grimes replied, frowning.

He walked through the hallways and bumped into Faith's homeroom teacher, Mrs. Grimes. | Source: Unsplash

He walked through the hallways and bumped into Faith's homeroom teacher, Mrs. Grimes. | Source: Unsplash

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"What do you mean?" he asked, his excitement dwindling at her words.

"Faith is at the school kitchen. She's been working there every day after school," she revealed nonchalantly.

"What?" he questioned, his head inclining to the side in confusion.

"Yes. Faith works in the kitchen. You just have to exit the building as I explained earlier, and the cafeteria building is next to the library," Mrs. Grimes explained, not understanding why Daniel was confused.

"No, that's not what I meant. Why is my daughter working in the kitchen? Is she getting paid?" he demanded to know, his hands at his waist as his temper rose.

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"As far as I know, no, she's not getting paid. I thought you knew about this," the teacher shrugged. "You can go ask her yourself."

Mrs. Grimes walked away, and Daniel stood there in complete shock for a few seconds. Was the school taking advantage of his daughter? Using free labor? "Oh, hell no," he muttered quietly and walked toward the cafeteria building, where the school kitchen was located.

Daniel reached the cafeteria and confirmed that Faith was working in the kitchen. | Source: Unsplash

Daniel reached the cafeteria and confirmed that Faith was working in the kitchen. | Source: Unsplash

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Just as Mrs. Grimes said, Faith was working. She was wearing a uniform and everything. Daniel couldn't believe his eyes and the anger that rose from his chest. His only daughter was not just cooking at home because she had a mediocre father, but the school was using her.

His face turned red, but he didn't want to yell at his daughter or any of the workers there. He needed to go to a superior, so he turned and walked swiftly toward the principal's office. He had to ask a few lingering students for directions, but he got there quickly.

"WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS, PRINCIPAL COLLINS?" he yelled as he burst through the office door bypassing the man's secretary, who jumped from her desk. But she couldn't stop Daniel. He was determined to get to the bottom of this.

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"Sir, who are you?" the principal asked, rising from his desk and taking off his reading glasses.

"I'm Daniel Sutton. My daughter is Faith Sutton, who you have working without pay in the kitchen! You want to me to call some people? Because I'm pretty sure using a minor for labor is illegal!" Daniel shouted, pointing his finger angrily at the principal.

He stormed into the principal's office and demanded to know why they were taking advantage of his daughter. | Source: Pexels

He stormed into the principal's office and demanded to know why they were taking advantage of his daughter. | Source: Pexels

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Principal Collins raised his hands in defense and shook his head slowly. A small chuckle escaped his lips, and Daniel thought his head would explode. But before he could scream some more, the principal started speaking.

"Mr. Sutton, your daughter asked for that," the man revealed, and Daniel's frown got even more intense.

"I don't understand," he uttered irritably.

"Faith asked to work in the kitchen after school because she wanted to learn to cook and be able to cook at home. But I think this is something you have to talk to her about. We are not demanding anything of your daughter. In fact, I believe she's one of the best students in her year," the principal stated, going to a back cabinet and pulling a folder with Faith's name. "Yes, she's got straight As, but she doesn’t seem to like any after-school activities we have available. She requested to work in the kitchen, and we said yes. Honestly, it'll be a huge asset for her when she applies to a college."

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Daniel's anger dissipated entirely at the principal's words, and he felt like an idiot. He apologized immediately and profusely. Principal Collins encouraged him to talk to his daughter, so he rushed to the cafeteria.

Faith was surprised to see him there, and he asked her to sit at one of the cafeteria tables to explain everything. She started from the beginning and revealed something even more surprising.

Faith explained that the new cook, Mrs. Austin, was amazing, and she wanted to learn from her. | Source: Pexels

Faith explained that the new cook, Mrs. Austin, was amazing, and she wanted to learn from her. | Source: Pexels

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"Mrs. Austin, the new cook? She made a cherry pie the other day that tasted like the one Mom used to make. I wanted to learn, so I stayed one day and she taught me. She's been teaching me to make the pie, and I haven't perfected it yet, but I'm close. Mrs. Grimes said that I could probably put this on my college apps in a few years, so I thought I should keep doing it," his daughter explained, and Daniel's head fell on his shoulders.

"Are you sure this is what you want? Honestly? You're not doing this because you feel bad at home or that your awful father can't cook?" he finally asked, his eyes conveying as much emotion as he could. He wanted his daughter to speak from the heart.

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"No, Dad. Please!" Faith scoffed and laughed at her father. "I would never. You're an adult. I'm not cooking for you at all. I'm cooking for me. My strongest memories of Mom consist of her cooking. I remember it so well that sometimes I even smell things at home as if she was still alive. And the more I learned about cooking, the more I wanted to know. I might not become a chef, but I'll be able to make all the dishes Mom used to make so lovingly."

Daniel's eyes watered, and he couldn't believe how grown-up his daughter seemed. He held her hands tightly and told her how proud he was of her. He also revealed his plans for a Six Flags outing, and Faith got excited too but suggested they postpone it for the next day. The proud father agreed. He had accumulated enough days off that he could do that for her.

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They went to Six Flags the following day and had tons of fun. | Source: Unsplash

They went to Six Flags the following day and had tons of fun. | Source: Unsplash

Faith went back to the kitchen, and Daniel went home. That night, she made them another delicious dish she learned, and the following day, they went to the amusement park, enjoying their time like never before.

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What can we learn from this story?

  • It's best not to jump to conclusions before you get the whole story. Daniel rushed and yelled at the principal when he discovered his daughter working in the school kitchen, but he had to apologize after finding out the truth.
  • Everyone should talk to their kids more often about their lives, feelings, hobbies, etc. Daniel didn't know that his daughter was so interested in cooking that she started learning and working at school. He was caught off-guard by the truth, but everything turned out alright in the end.

Share this story with your friends. It might brighten their day and inspire them.

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If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a dad who followed his 12-year-old daughter only to discover that she visits an abandoned house every day.

This piece is inspired by stories from the everyday lives of our readers and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to info@amomama.com.

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