[This note comes from the desk of Ms. Debby. Exciting!]
Mayan Apocalypse? Doubt it. Fiscal Cliff? I have no idea.
But I can predict, with a reasonable amount of certainty, a GOOD change coming to the TLC! nutrition program.
When we return from Christmas break, I will no longer be the head chef and child nutrition manager. It has been an honor and a great learning experience, to hold that position for the last (almost) 8 years. When I came to the kitchen, from a teaching background by the way, I had one other part-time employee in the kitchen and on a “big” day I was cooking for 60 –something people at lunch. By comparison, today we are doing 80+ for breakfast and sometimes 130 for lunch. We’ve grown.
I am intensely proud of our program, and I wouldn’t turn “my” kitchen over to just anyone. But Mary Morris isn’t just anyone. She was hired 2 ½ years ago with the idea that she was capable of being groomed to take my place, and her talent in the kitchen has certainly met and exceeded our expectations. She has, in fact, for the past several months, been cooking the lunches and learning to do the managerial tasks that come along with the job. I can say with great confidence that she is ready to completely take over the role of Child Nutrition Manager. She has a good team in place to support her, and I expect that this transition will be fairly seamless.
But Wait…if this sounds like “goodbye” it isn’t. You are not rid of me yet. For at least the remainder of the school year, I will still be cooking and serving at our Early Bird Breakfast Club. Once that is finished each day, I will be out of the kitchen and into my new role of providing nutrition education and promotion. What does that mean? Well, it means you should initially see more nutrition displays on the serving line and in the dining commons, more nutrition-related posts on the blog, and some taste-testing opportunities. Then, once I have had time to gather some materials and create some lessons, I will begin to offer some in-classroom opportunities. They may take the form of some hands-on cooking demonstrations that encourage healthy eating, some “book cooks” (where we read a book and prepare some related food), some projects in partnership with Ms. Emily where we prepare what is growing in the school garden, or a lesson customized to your own classroom needs. My schedule, after about 9:30 or so, will be fairly flexible.
So please be considering how I can best serve you and your students in this new role…and make Mary welcome in hers.