The Long County Board of Education recently heard a report from school food director Stephanie Fox on the program’s theme for this school year, “A Positive Change.”
Fox told the board that 153,568 breakfasts, 224,714 lunches and 923 afternoon snacks were served from the start of the year through December. Of those meals, 878 were purchased at full price, 368 bought at a reduced cost, and 1,910 weren’t paid for by the student. Fox said that of the meals served, more than 72 percent either were served free or at a reduced rate, and less than 18 percent of the parents paid for their children’s meals at the county’s full rate. She said that the total spent on groceries in the system through December was $488,318.
Fox added that the program had been busy this year serving meals, but also showing support for the school system in other ways. Along with the schools, it took part in the Picnic for Parents, Breast Cancer Awareness Week, Trunk-or-Treat, the homecoming parade, the high school’s open house and National School Lunch Week.
She said the community showed tremendous support during NSLW, with staffers from Ludowici City Hall, the BoE, the Long County Sheriff’s Office, the Ludowici Police Department and the Ludowici/Long County Fire Department volunteering to work.
Fox said that on Jan. 6, her staff took part in training at the Bohemian Hotel in Savannah. She said that the staff toured the hotel and restaurant facilities with the goal of “seeing things as the customers do.”
Fox told the board that she has 31 employees in the food-service program, and that of those, three had at least 10 years of experience, five had at least 15 years of experience, and two had more than 20 years of experience.
Fox said that according to input she received, morale at all schools is high, and there is a mutual respect between her department and the other departments in the school system.
All board members voiced appreciation for the presentation, with member Florence Baggs especially grateful.
“In my 21 years as a board member, this is the first presentation by a school nutritionist that I’ve seen. I’m glad for it because now I know what goes on in the cafeteria,” she said.