Grade School Cafeteria Food?

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by m brown, Oct 3, 2000.

  1. m brown

    m brown

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    Does anyone have expertise in this field?

    [This message has been edited by m brown (edited October 03, 2000).]
     
  2. unichef

    unichef

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    Expertise as far as what? Perhaps we may be able to answer your questions without actually having worked in one.
     
  3. m brown

    m brown

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    Nutritional guidelines, Budgets, Is Ketcup a veg? Sanitation, you know, the whole nine yards.
    I was looking at our schools menu and am appalled at the amount of fried items and cheese items. Many kids have allergies and high cholesteral, there is no clean food to be seen. ie, salads with grilled chicken, veggies with hummus dip, pita with tuna salad, dehydrated fruit chips, calcuim fortified juices, soy or rice milk.
    It seems every thing is loaded with nitrates, sugar and saturated fats. There has got to be a better way. I have cooked for the homeless and they were served better food more creative food on a tight budget.
    I need to buy a clue!
     
  4. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    OH baby you've just hit the tip of the iceberg.....rice crispy treats are nutrious breakfast foods, as are vitamin enriched doughnuts....
    Check with your state ed dept on what they set as standards, there is also a reg. dietician over seeing foods in NY schools
    They can actually be ok I got $5000 grant from mine to do Farmers~chef's in the schools if I hit the nutritional aspect.
    Alice Waters is changing the landscape by installing kitchens and chefs in Berkley schools along with gardens.....it has caught on and is flourishing in that area.
    They are retraining food staff to cook again.
    Pretty sad and scary what our children are feed 2 out of 3 meals 5 days a week.
    By our I mean the children in our community.
     
  5. lynne

    lynne

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    My friend works for the school system in MD--sanitation-wise their still has to be atleast 1 supervisory person on at all times that has passed Serv-Safe or comparable program. Budget-wise, often $1-1.40 per meal! Grilled chicken breasts don't fit the budget! Also, most kids want what they are familiar with -- pizza and french fries rule! Working with grade school kids, it is very difficult to train them to try something new when Mom is not around. She had a difficult time with the adult teachers when she was trying to expand to a more healthy menu!

    Having worked with a college food service contract, they still want pizza, french fries and chicken fingers! Ugh!!!! I had a hot line limited to 2 entrees, grill, deli and salad bar and can tell you that school folks don't do healthy. Roast chicken, turkey days went well, but we still sold more pizza. Lasagna, Pasta arabits, pomodora, etc, goes well.

    Who knows. We start to educate and make up for it at home! By the way, in the one position (college all you can eat--not the one I just described, I had 1.80/person!) Try to do that with solid meats, good fresh vegs!
     
  6. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    I've heard rumors that farmers can provide produce to schools with a subsidized price from the gov't....not looked into that one.
    Hummos can not cost that much more to make than BLECK

    School foods are a commercial enterprise now instead of a part of an intagrated curriculum....health, PE, Science and food that represents what is being taught.
     
  7. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    Let's see how long it takes to overhaul the grants and foods our children eat in school.
    I'm betting a good start will happen in 3-5 years.
     
  8. lynne

    lynne

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    Its not that I don't agree that there needs to be a major overhaul; but that means that parents need to teach their kids that there is more to food than the drive through!

    True, hummus is not that expensive; but who is going to teach that kid in line that that beige paste is good to eat --so many adults still don't know what it is -- and let's face it - school food is never going to be presented attractively in most school systems...Can you imagine what some kid thinks that "yellow glop" (an actual term used at the college I worked at) is?

    It's scary how many grow up on mac and cheese (not made by mom but in the microwave) and know the dominos number by heart! I hate to see people out there that don't know food well enough to appreciate it! but, until then, there is going to be franchise pizza and taco bell at school instead of good food, or the state looses the little cafeteria sales do bring in--do you know how many middle schools out there allow takeout? (pizza is the norm) scary! not that I would dream of preaching
     
  9. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    Wellll you've hit the nail on the head....it's a $ thing with too many people who make the decisions on our tax dollars.
    Or who run the school systems.
    Look at HOW MUCH $$ is in the tax and school systems and in the federal budget. Look at how much is being wasted on stuff that essentially does not affect our children.
    There are several national chef groups that are jumping into the fire (or on the bandwagon) and saying this is too important not to support. AIWF< ACF<CHEFS COLLABORATIVE<JAMES BEARD< these are the ones I know of that are taking the time and energy to get out of the restaurants and into the schools.
    This generation of parents have lost the ability to cook, or most are two income and want fast easy (yes nutritious, but not at the exspense of fast and easy)> many don't choose to make time for food concerns....it's an afterthought< it does not come easy for them and they don't choose to expend the effort. [​IMG]
     
  10. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    OK guys the cost of using farm produce cannot be over $1.75 a meal......
    spagetti fritata, eggplant pepper and tomato, ricotta cheese with tomato salad and potatoes....

    Hummos wrap ups with fresh veg

    Smoked pork sandwiches with slaw


    Black bean burritos

    What's going on in the schools????Whose watching our children's health?
    If it is trully a $ thing than medical costs associated with diet will skyrocket.
    Eat in a public school soon and see what's going on for yourselves.
     
  11. m brown

    m brown

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    You cannot imagine what crap they feed the kids because the kids "will only
    eat french fries, fried cheese, mac n cheese, fried chicken and floppy pizza."
    They won't let our kids have water as a beverage option with lunch because
    it does not fulfill a carbohydrate component. What the !&@*????? 8 X 8oz glasses a day? not
    But they will serve lemonade with no real anything in it.
    I requested hot turkey, starch and veg with a cranberry side. They said it
    was difficult because they have to roast the meat. I requested brunch for
    lunch with waffles, yogurt and banana, we could get the banana.
    Requested no more fried chicken (?) nuggets, was told they eat that.
    YUCK! The middle school children are served french fries with every meal.
    Why, because they eat that.
    I say offer more choices of non fried products and they will eat eventually.
    Hummus we were told is too expensive.
    Tacos are too hard to put together!!!!!!!!
    The public school system in this country has to change! It is the 21 century,
    lets jump in.
    Who has a modern public school story so I can see there is hope?
    Fresh produce and non fried options at lunch
    Extended schedules for children of working parents
    Training and testing for the teachers with community support
    NO MORE PUKE GREEN AND BEIGE PAINT ON SCHOOL
    WALLS!
    In our grade school, there are no textbooks. Only dittos and workbooks.
    Our budget is $45,000,000.00 for the district, that works out to $16,500.00 per student. No extended day and for our school this year, no playground.(rip down and re-build.) Can anyone say excessive? Sure you can. [​IMG]
     
  12. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    Ross School in East Hampton....tuition $10,000.....Ann Cooper was in town last weekend for several events.
    She started a program 5-12 grade
    Everything from scratch local sustainable foods....they grind their salt. 7 stations 1000 meals a day, everything from scratch....I met their pastry chef he makes breakfast and lunch trully amazing....I want to eat there.
    Woodfired oven for flat breads...etc....
    East Hampton. Was set up as a "YES YOU CAN" school site.
    Berkley has switched over to gardens (master gardeners) and a kitchen with chef at their schools (Alice Waters Thank You) Kids learn thematic lesson through the garden adn they cook for each other....not the 3 cookies my child is learning in practical living this year (one from a box cake mix)
    Fries with pizza , YES IT HAPPENS DAILY
    I walked through this cafeteria and all the food was shades of brown....even the stuff from home. It's not good. It's horrific.
    Whether you have kids in the school system or not these are the kids that will be leading the country when we're old......they are OUR children.

    [This message has been edited by shroomgirl (edited October 21, 2000).]
     
  13. youla

    youla

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    wraps are a great hit with mountain bread , salad , grilled chicken[ one chicken breast should do 2 - 3 wraps and if the kids are so hung up on french fries..can you do oven baked fries...or the kids here that i know love garlic roasted chats and having a teenage girl who would starve because everything at the canteen was fattening have some low fat options ...perhaps they could submit a list[when my daughter wanted to lose weight I made her do a list of things she liked to eat then I went through and told her what options or substitutes or different cooking methods we could use] but if you have a captive audience they end up trying things they might not normally try...perhaps make one day a week french fry day ..oh yeah kids love pasta!!! believe me!!!
     
  14. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    Chat as a food item??????
     
  15. m brown

    m brown

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    I am not alone!!!!!!!!!!!!
    THANK YOU GUYS!

    [​IMG]
     
  16. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    M Brown~ when I was talking to the state dietician about available grants she said there are alot of monies presently available if you do school gardens. Mo is a challenge since our growing season is essentially May/June through Oct/Nov. But we (chef's Collaborative Mo) have combined with farmers,SLU dietic dept and chefs to do a series....Grant readers really like collabortion amoung different elements in the community. The State dietician wrote the grant and we just fill in...much easier than having to write it yourself. Many agencies are looking for groups to do what you are doing....
    FYI when my children went to school in Baton Rouge the school wanted them to have a covered cup of water with them at their desk.
    Many rules defy logic.