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Students discuss school lunches

students discuss school lunches

By Tiffany Wiseman

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When sitting in the Booker High lunch room, you see many students eating the cafeteria’s food … but you also hear the grumble of student complaints about the school lunches.

Do students really dislike the lunches and eat them because it’s the only food they have to eat? Or are many just griping and actually like the food?

To find out, we surveyed 31 students (the survey had a confidence level of 95 percent, with a margin of error of +/- 17.3 percent). We found that even though many complained about the school lunches,all 31 students we surveyed said yes they had gotten the lunch at least a couple of times this year. Five of the 31 stopped eating it after that. The other 26 regularly eat the lunch. That represents 84 percent of the school.

Kahlyn Washington, class of 2020, regularly eats the lunch but said of the food: “It’s worse than jail food and it tastes nasty.”

When asked, 25 out of the 31 said they threw away most of the food. The other 6 students said they threw away almost none of the lunch. Six students picked chicken as their favorite food at Booker, five students picked nachos, four picked tacos, and four said chicken nuggets.

According to Mr. Michael Stroud, food service manager, 500-600 of the 1,228 students eat lunch from the Booker High cafeteria each day. Amenu committee of staff members comes up with the food choices and forwards that to the kitchen.

Dayan Ricardo, class of 2019, was concerned about the quality of the food: “It makes my stomach hurt and it tastes and feels raw.” Mr. Stroud said he wasn’t

surprised by the complaints, and he understands a lot of the complaints were about the press-down chicken tenders, which were newer. There were a lot of complaints from the staff, too.

County officials inspect the school lunches and cafeteria three times a year to check for cleanliness of the area where the food is made, as well as the quality of the food based on the temperatures and how the meat is cooked. The county also inspects the plumbing and sewage of the cafeteria.

During each of the past three inspections, the county didn’t find any violations. Reporter Olivia Wallenstein contributed to this report.

From top to bottom: Loretta Johnson serves a student during 5th period lunch; Barbara Murello.