Family and Community Engagement. Futuros Prosperos. Thriving Futures.

Rosa Parks Elementary School kindergarten students recently visited their school kitchen to see the food services team in action. The kitchen tour aligns an International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme lesson that focuses on “How we organize ourselves.” Seeing the dedicated staff members who prepare and serve breakfast and lunch every school day shows students an example of an important job in a community organization.

Much to the delight of the students, Michelle Steinberg, food service manager at Rosa Parks Elementary, greeted each student with a chef’s hat to wear during the tour. As students walked past the lunch line area into the kitchen, they expressed sounds of excitement when they saw food services team members hard at work preparing lunch. Steinberg explained how many food options are made from scratch.

Kristin Stapor, a kindergarten teacher, said, “The students were in awe of how the utensils and machines are so much bigger than they have in their homes.” And just like at home, the dishes have to be washed. The students were also amazed by the large washers used to safely clean all the dishes. An exciting but very cold part of the tour was the walk-in freezer.

The 20-minute tour left quite an impression on students. Stapor explained, “When we returned to the classroom, students drew pictures and wrote sentences about their experience to share with the food services staff.”

Every school day, the PWCS Food and Nutrition Department meets the challenge of preparing and serving approximately 60,000 lunches and 30,000 breakfasts to students. Whenever possible, the division relies on local sources to provide students with a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and low or fat free milk as well as properly portioned proteins and grains. The school division’s registered dietitians plan meals that are free of trans fats and are less than 10% saturated fat.

PWCS is very proud to celebrate the over 800 food services team members across the school division during School Nutrition Employee Recognition Week. The important role they serve in keeping students fueled for success is appreciated.