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The Pillars of a School District: The Lunchroom Staff

Faithfully serving food every school day
Cameron Loss
Mrs. Joubert gets the food prepared before taking her trusty perch at the register.

As we progress through our school years, we reflect on the journey and the climb to reach the climax of our school’s high school journey.

We realize that there have been many people who have acted for us to mold us into who we are. Now I am talking about everyone, workers who we often overlook, workers who are essential to the clean and smooth flow of a school district.

People helped raise the next generation.

Our school’s lunch staff do what they do for a deeper reason

The group this particular article covers is the school lunch staff, those individuals who are tasked with preparing the food for hundreds of students. I wanted to discuss their impact and detail their daily responsibilities.

To complete this assignment to the best of my ability I interviewed a very experienced lunch worker: Ms. Joubert. Her story was instrumental in my pursuit of a better understanding of the job. I wanted to know why she did what she did and how she first found this job.

The work begins early in the morning and doesn’t end with students eating. (Cameron Loss)

She explained that the job is perfect for a mother with kids in school because you have the same hours as your child and you can always be there for them.

I also wanted to find out what is the most important skill to have to effectively work this job. The answer is the ability to learn and not be against a change in work mode or style. You have to go with the flow and accept the circumstances as they happen.

You will be tasked with making large quantities of meals daily. A good sense of time management is essential. Cooking enough food daily can be quite a challenge. When someone is absent for even a day the impact is felt throughout the entire district.

The process involves so many people in order for it to be ready at the right time. (Cameron Loss)

Another task filled with hardship and stress is the ordering of meal ingredients for future meals. Arranging the shipment of food is difficult and requires a level of thoroughness. Everyone is assigned a crucial task in the kitchen, a sort of assembly line style of operation. Together, they create the meals served.

The lunch staff also has to be wary of giving lunch to children with food allergies or intolerances. I also asked about the impact COVID-19 on the operation of the kitchen. The pandemic created an atmosphere of constant fear of COVID-19. During the pandemic, the kitchen staff saw a new task arise: the preparation of grab-and-go lunches for the school community. The staff had to adjust to boxing lunches rather than serving in the traditional form.

…the job is perfect for a mother with kids in school because you have the same hours as your child

— Mrs. Joubert

The majority of the Kitchen staff contracted COVID-19, which led to widespread disruption of the rhythm of the kitchen.

Our school’s lunch staff do what they do for a deeper reason than what is viewed on the surface level. Their drive is that of wanting to make a difference in the next generation and to see how children grow.

I can say for certain that in my school experience, cafeteria workers have played a massive role in the forming of our school district and for that matter the world. So let’s appreciate them and give thanks to those who create the meals for the school district.

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About the Contributor
Matthew Gemme
Matthew Gemme, Staff Reporter
I am a junior at Sutton. That is all you get.

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