The cafeteria, according to Cafeteria Manager Anne Marie Woerner, has used last year to plan and prepare for the changes to take place this year. These changes will be due to new guidelines regarding school lunches implemented last year.
Most of last year has gone into preparing and planning for this year, and the cafeteria has planned how lunch will work down to the minute detail, even carrying fruit trays a different way to deal with the weight of increased fruit and vegetable servings to come this year.
“Many of the workers at the cafeteria have been here for a very long time, and they all know their jobs very well,” Woerner said. “At this point, the cafeteria pretty much runs itself, which allowed us to think ahead to (this) year’s changes.”
Assistant Cafeteria Manager Holly Hull said she agrees with Woerner.
“The conversation since I got here in the middle of (last) year has been about the changes to come (this) year,” Hull said. “I think we’re very prepared.”
One thing the cafeteria has not prepared, however, is the students. To make a lunch, the new legislation requires both a fruit and vegetable side with the entrée and drink. If this is not met, then the lunch costs significantly more since it does not meet the new standards.
“I think the hardest part of (this) year will be getting students to understand what makes a lunch,” Woerner said. “I don’t think we’re going to sell as many full lunches until the kids figure out that the best deal is the full lunch.”
To help students understand what makes a full lunch, the cafeteria will do a number of things, including putting up signs, labeling the different components of lunch at the cafeterias and possibly collaborating with video classes to create a video for the announcements.
Sophomore Chris Hillard supports the new standards but disagrees with how the cafeteria will enforce them.
“I see how setting requirements for what a lunch can be is a good idea, but I don’t think they should charge more for not buying a whole lunch,” Hillard said.
Woerner said she believes the changes will be good for students, and she is happy that the school is prepared for them.
“That was the focus of this year, really, just getting ready for next year,” Woerner said. “I think these changes will definitely be positive.”
While several changes will be implemented this year, all changes outlined in the federal regulations will be enacted over the upcoming years.