City Brings Back Plan to Put Chefs in School Cafeterias

The program has had good results in schools, but was in danger of ending when new USDA rules take effect this fall.

City education officials said Monday that they’ve decided to revive a program that matches professional chefs with public school cafeterias, bringing back healthier meals made from scratch, according to the New York Times.

The program’s organizer, Wellness in the Schools (WITS), was in danger of being cut off from schools when new, more stringent USDA regulations take effect in schools this fall. Education officials worried that WITS could not create school meals that also met the new rules thus putting some of the city’s federal lunch money in jeopardy.

“We are worried about, ‘Too many cooks can spoil the broth,’ ” Eric S. Goldstein, the chief executive of school support services, told the Times last week, describing administrators’ caution. “We have to make sure we follow what is federally mandated.”

City Council speaker Christine Quinn, along with other lawmakers, urged the Department of Education to work with WITS  – who makes lunch in about 30 schools – on changing the menu to abide by the USDA, according to the Times.

“We are working in collaboration with WITS on an alternative menu that will also meet the new USDA regulations,” said Erin Hughes, a department spokeswoman.

Harriet Brown August 29, 2012 at 07:31 PM
Of course the food should be nourshing and not contaminated in any way. But, if the rules are too strict, children will suffer.


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