Make Your School Cafeteria Better With These Improvement Tips

Your school’s cafeteria needs to run smoothly. If your school’s cafeteria isn’t running well, then students won’t get fed on time (or won’t enjoy their food) and won’t perform well in class. If students return home unfed every day and aren’t performing, then sooner or later their parents will begin complaining, and your state’s education department will begin investigating your school. All of these issues can be avoided by making sure that your school’s cafeteria runs properly.

This post will tell you how you can improve the efficiency and quality of your school’s cafeteria.

Safe Equipment

In your school’s cafeteria, you need to make sure that the chairs and tables are all safe for children to use. Remember: the equipment that’s in your cafeteria will be used and abused. If it isn’t durable and safe, then children could hurt themselves on it.

If a child hurts themselves, then you could be sued. Make sure to reinforce your tables with steel and attach them to the ground. You can also make seating safer by using chair glides because they provide protection and support for the chair leg. Ideally, the chairs and tables that you buy should be made out of a heavy metal so that they won’t bend or break easily.

Student Input

When it comes to the food that’s served in your cafeteria, you need to give your students the opportunity to give input about what they want to eat. A lot of schools just create menus according to what they think will be suitable, but that’s not always the best way to encourage students to eat the food that’s served. It is especially important to allow students to have a say over what’s served if you charge them or their parent’s money for food.

Vending Machines

Vending machines are a great addition to make to your school’s cafeteria. A lot of schools have vending machines in place because they give students the opportunity to access drinks and snacks quickly when they are on the move. Make sure that you only ever give students the opportunity to buy healthy items from your cafeteria’s vending machines.

You shouldn’t include fizzy drinks, chocolates, and other unhealthy snacks. Parents likely won’t be very happy if they discover that their children have access to junk food in school.

Healthy Options

While on the subject of health, it is important to make sure that the food that’s served in your school’s cafeteria is consistently healthy. A lot of schools think that it’s acceptable to serve unhealthy food, like burgers and fries, but it isn’t.

The reason that this is unacceptable is that by doing this, children are conditioned to think that it’s okay to eat very unhealthy food from a young age. If you are going to serve things like burgers and fries,  make sure the fries are oven-baked and that the burgers are lean, healthy, and organic.

Upgraded Classics

As mentioned in the last part of the previous section, if you are going to offer unhealthy ‘classic’ meals, then you should upgrade them and make them healthy. Children will naturally gravitate towards foods that they are familiar with, so by offering them healthy alternatives, they will unknowingly be consuming food that’s very good for them.

If you want to ensure that your school’s menu is as healthy as possible, then hire a nutritionist and ask them to come in and to help you to develop a menu. They will be able to effectively create healthy alternatives and upgrades.

Food Sources

While organic food can be expensive, it is a good investment in your student’s health. If you can’t source organic food then at the very least make sure that you get it from suppliers who have a commitment to providing free-range and natural foods.

You should always research and know your food suppliers. If it is possible, avoid buying products from factory farms. Going back to organic food for a moment, you may be able to strike up a deal with an organic farm—they may give you a discount if you buy bulk, allowing you to buy organic produce more affordably. 

School Farm

A very good way of ensuring that the food that’s given to your children is of high quality is to open up your own school farm because that will give you the opportunity to monitor how produce is grown. Many schools have done this quite successfully.

You could actually have your own students tend to the farm, as part of their science classes. If you are going to employ students to run your school’s farm then you will naturally need to employ a skilled and qualified farmer, who can instruct them and guide them along, in addition to maintaining and looking after the plants and animals when they aren’t around.

Painting Walls

Moving away from food quality, you should give your students the opportunity to paint the walls of your cafeteria. Painting the walls will help them to feel more involved in your cafeteria’s development. It will be a special experience for them that they will never forget.

If you can’t allow them to paint the walls, then you should at the very least give them the opportunity to sign their name on the wall. Make sure that the students are supervised when they are signing their names since there’s bound to be one student who will think that it’s acceptable to write something crude or inappropriate.

Student Involvement

If you are designing your school’s cafeteria, then you could consider asking your students for their opinions. A cafeteria can be much more than just a place to eat; it can be a place for students to congregate, study, and hang out. Asking students what they would like to see can help you to transform your cafeteria into a place where they want to spend all of their time.

Some schools put in games machines, snooker tables, or foosball tables. However, make sure that you don’t turn your school cafeteria into a place that causes distraction and becomes more important to students than their studies.

If you are responsible for reshaping your school’s cafeteria, then you should make sure that the furniture is safe, and that students have a say in the final design. You should also ensure that the food served is healthy and preferably organic.

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