District 204 expands cafeteria staff

Abigail McArthur-Self, Editor-in-Chief

District 204 has added new positions to its managerial staff to improve operations.

According to Ronald Johnson, the District Director of Support Services, the majority of the positions are for the elementary schools, providing them with on-site managers for the first time to help staff deal with problems as they arise. Previously, they would have to contact the district to deal with any serious issues, creating a communication delay.  

They also hired a professional chef to help set the menu. Paul Tinaglia was trained at the Culinary Institute of America. As the executive chef, Johnson explains, Tinaglia’s role is “not to change the menu, but improve it.” The school is continually working to ensure the quality of the food provided in the cafeteria. Students are welcomed to recommend new menu items in their schools.

Two years ago the district switched providers for the cafeteria. All staff at the schools were guaranteed first picks for jobs when they made the transition. District 204 currently contracts Organic Life as their food provider. Johnson explains that deliveries are made multiple times a week in effort to ensure the freshness and quality of the food. They also began allowing student account balances to be paid online.

The national government requires that all meals include, “fluid milk, grains, meat/meat alternatives and fruits and/or vegetables.” The district offers free and reduced price meals to lower income students and provides meals accommodating any dietary restrictions with the provision of a medical note. Students without a medical note may still purchase special meals such as gluten free meals at a higher price.

More information can be found on the district’s website under the food services tab.