Overcrowding forces 9:45 a.m. lunch

Decision raises parents ire.

Sept. 10—A middle school in Queens, N.Y., is facing the common problem of having too many students and not enough cafeteria space.

The predicament has parents up in arms over whether it’s lunch or brunch their children will be eating before 10 a.m. each day. I.S. 25 in Flushing is one of three schools jammed inside a building on 192nd Street. The cafeteria there is being slammed by extreme overcrowding, prompting an extraordinary response to the lunch crunch starting when school returns on Thursday. In a letter to parents, the principal at I.S. 25 wrote eighth grade students will begin their brunch at 9:45 a.m.  

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
chicken and waffles

Our elementary menu is currently riding the breakfast-anytime advertising trend by offering Breakfast for Lunch every Tuesday. It ranks as our highest participation, and it was a great way for us to introduce chicken and waffles inspired by an IHOP dish.

Ideas and Innovation
dress code geeks

Team uniforms are a way we encourage fun. I tell the mangers that every person on your team needs to look like a member of your team, but they can decide together what they want to wear. When the students see a cafeteria person that is matching and having fun with their outfits, they relate to those people better. We don’t want them to look stiff and stuffy.

Menu Development
meatloaf slices plate

“This is the best meatloaf I’ve ever had,” a diner at Alcatel-Lucent telecommunications in Naperville, Ill., once told chef Iraj Fernando. The dish was rooted in a tried-and-true source—the “Betty Crocker Cookbook.”

“I just seasoned the breadcrumbs differently, used fresh parsley and beat the eggs to make them frothier,” says Fernando, executive chef and manager for Southern Foodservice Management.

Consumer interest is up for classic and comforting meat dishes like meatballs (16%), beef pot pie (26%) and meatloaf (12%) for dinner now compared to two years ago, shows...

Ideas and Innovation
oxford school district cafeteria

We have spent considerable money making cafeterias cool again. New paint jobs, crazy color patterns, custom graphics and changes in lighting schemes have made some of our cafes popular gathering places. We’ve also experimented with videos, cable TV programs and music. We involved a number of student groups and student input in improving the atmosphere, especially in our high school and middle school cafeterias.

FSD Resources