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Brick School Cafeterias Face Slumping Sales

Privatization may be considered

Cafeteria revenue is down in the Brick school district, and officials may consider other options including privatization if the trend continues.

Recent sales figures show a 10 percent drop from the 2011 numbers, Board of Education member Larry Reid said at a meeting.

Reid placed the blame for slumping sales on new federal nutritional guidelines that he says have proven unpopular with students statewide.

"All of the fats and sugars have been replaced by fruits and vegetables, so you know how that's going over with the kids," said Reid. "A lot of kids are bringing their own lunch."

Reid said the district will have to revise its budget estimations for cafeteria sales, and suggested district officials look into starting a breakfast program in middle schools that would have the potential to generate revenue.

The district may eventually have to consider privatizing cafeteria operations, however, Reid said.

Currently, the district employs cafeteria workers. Statewide, said Reid, about 70 percent of districts have privatized the cafeteria staff and solicited bids from companies that operate cafeterias.

"Long term, we cannot lose money in the cafeteria," said Reid.

If the district continues to lose money in its cafeterias, school officials have warned the county executive superintendent of schools could compel Brick to privatize operations.

RiversideRhymes December 11, 2012 at 03:51 AM
I think a lot of parents have to leave for work very early and therefore end up having to let their children eat at school during 'before school' care programs. Also, of course, you can't forget students whose parents have difficulty providing their children with breakfast and therefore receive the subsidized meal each morning.
Gary Homes December 11, 2012 at 06:58 AM
As someone who attends brick township high school. The lunch is friggin disgusting. The fries are baked and taste like crap (Thank god we got tater tots now), the chicken patties are the only saving grace, and the drinks are more expensive than what they retail for in a store. The lunch staff does this thing now where they close the kitchen like 15 minutes after the lunch period starts, and they keep the doors closed throughout the day, whereas a few years ago they would leave it open and if you were hungry you could PURCHASE food at any time. I've seen the food get worse and worse every year. The food used to be decent when I was in elementary school, but now it's just turned to crap and it's embarrassing. I have a friend who attended a school in another state and their food was fine dining compared to what they serve here. Privatizing the school food can create good things. I'd imagine they would have to follow code but at least it's not government funding that supports them. I don't know what happened but what I can infer is the funding went down the shitter.
Bowie Thelonius December 11, 2012 at 01:21 PM
I'm old enough to remember when there were only one or two "fat" kids in my grade. By today's standards, they probably wouldn't even be considered overweight! For lunch I typically had a PB&J sandwich, a piece of fruit, and on rare occasions a small piece of cake. That;'s also what most of my classmates ate. Once every two weeks or so I bought the school lunch, especially on pizza day. At lunch time we ran around outside for nearly an hour and had two 20 minute outdoor recess periods per day. Yeah, I'm freakin' old, but still in good shape, due no doubt to lifelong habits of physical activity and good diet.
Bricktown Lew December 11, 2012 at 04:47 PM
Bowie, You're right! I too, remember the 1 or 2 fat kids that wouldn't even be called fat by today's standards. Now, the table has been turned to those 2 or 3 skinny kids instead. As mentioned by myself and others earlier, the 1960s and 1970s may not have been the healthiest decades food-wise by what we know today, the the problem has gotten much worse. Yes!!! When we were outside, we ran around! Remember those 70-80+ degree days of recess and coming into class dripping with sweat?? I do. We had tons of physical activity. However, those paragraphs of ingredients of stuff we weren't familiar with back then that we do know now are proven bad are still consumed just the same!! Then, the lack of exercise and physical activity except for "texting fingers" is just sad, but accepted. That's why the "normal weights" of kids just keep going up and up. It's a shame to be a 40 something kid of the 1970s that can outrun the average teen of today.
Sal Petoia December 11, 2012 at 05:28 PM
Sorry Rriverside, but that excuse doesn't fly. If a parent has to leave so early that they can't give their kids a bowl of cereal, then they can set it out the night before. All the child has to do is add milk. I imagine that there are some families that cannot afford to provide their kids with breakfast, but I'll bet many of those parents are sporting an Ipod or smoke. There is no excuse for not properly caring for a child. A bowl of cereal is not exactly a gourmet meal! And in worst case situations, I'm sure one of the local churches would provide for boxes of cereal for the really needy. I know my church collects regularly all the time! My concern is that our society is becoming so dependent on government caring for us that we are forgetting how to be responsible people. Sorry if anyone finds that offensive.

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