Greetings from the Food & Nutrition Services Director on behalf of all the Robla School District kitchens and kitchen staff! I have been with Robla School District for 32 years and have seen many things, but the most exciting have occurred over the past 9 years. I began my career as a food service assistant at Bell Avenue School and have worked my way up to become the Food Service Director. We currently operate kitchens in all five (5) of our elementary schools and service our Preschool through the kitchen at our Bell Avenue Elementary site. We have approximately 2400 students enrolled District-wide.
The Food Services Department offers all of its meals at no charge to all students regardless of income levels; a policy change that reduces financial burden on families and helps ensure that all students receive nutritious meals every day. This practice further supports the Robla School Districts efforts to promote student achievement by ensuring students are not hungry at school while they are involved in the learning process. We served a total of 371,959 lunches and 186,591 breakfasts last year. We valued our partnership with United Way who paved the way for us to provide a supper meal to our after school students. This year, the Robla School Food Service department provides a healthy meal prepared right in our kitchens.
The Robla School Districts Food Service professionals have a strong focus on the importance of eating a variety of fruits and vegetables daily. We offer 10 different vegetables, weekly, in our salad bars along with a variety of 12 different fruits. We also operate a Harvest of the Month program where each student is given a workbook at the beginning of the school year and his/her teacher gives a small lesson about the fruit or vegetable that we are introducing for that month. At lunch time, they have the opportunity to sample the fruit or vegetable and vote on whether they like it or not. The Robla School District also has a great Partnership with the Health Education Council and the Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services. Together we host a Walk with Friends parent walking group every Thursday (at 8:30 am-9:00) at the Robla Community Park across from the Taylor Street School. Parents can come out and walk for 30 minutes and receive a bag of fresh produce to take home after the walk has been completed. Once a month, at Main Avenue School, the Sacramento Food Bank brings out a truckload of fruits and vegetables to conduct a “farmers market”. Students and staff are active participants of the program. Each student receives $4.00 of “money” to allocate out among the choices present, and then take their purchases home to share the goodness of fresh produce with their families.
Our food service professionals are dedicated to serving our students in a friendly manner. Our staff members are educated in the areas of nutrition, customer service, safety and sanitation. In 1999, the State of California passed a law which requires one (1) person in each kitchen are certified as “ServSafe”. We strive to have all of our staff hold that certificate, and have accomplished that feat. All members of the District Food Service Staff are certified as “ServSafe”. Every 5 years, staff members are retrained in food safety, cleaning and sanitation to ensure they are current on any new techniques or strategies.
The Food Service Department believes that healthier students are also better learners, so we are committed to providing fresh and healthy meals, daily. Our hardworking staff prepares two (2) meals a week from scratch for lunch, and one (1) for breakfast. All of our meals meet or exceed the guidelines on standards for nutrition as established by the US Department of Agriculture.
We welcome questions, comments and thoughts from all of our parents, students and community members and hope you have a wonderful, and healthy, day!
“When you make an effort to eat well, once you begin to feel better, the effort is not so hard.” - Margaret Marshall – retired Massachusetts Supreme Court Justice
Yours in Health,
Cathy MoenFood Services Director, Robla School District