School Food Heroes

“We couldn’t have done it without them!”

In anticipation of homegrown school lunch week four South Winneshiek high school students agreed to help food service director Laura Lectenberg prepare locally grown potatoes to be served at lunch.  Jordan, Payton, Darrik and Blaine arrived at school around 7:15am on Wednesday, October 17th and made their way to the kitchen for what they thought would be an hour or so of spud scrubbing.  However, the plan for the day changed when at 7:30am South Winn schools were placed on precautionary lockdown and students of all ages, pre-k thru high school were ushered into the high school building.  


It soon became evident that the lockdown would extend into the school day, but rather
than stop after their agreed upon hour of work, Jordan, Payton, Darrik and Blaine remained in the kitchen and continued prepping potatoes.  By 11:00am they were finished washing all of the potatoes needed for homegrown school lunch week, over 250 pounds of potatoes!


At this time the food service staff was just about to begin serving lunch to the over 300 students of all ages that were gathered at the school. This foursome however was quick to notice that many of the younger kids could not even see over the counter to take their lunch trays.  Jordan, Payton, Darrik and Blaine thus stepped in again and helped make lunch a success by placing fruit, vegetables, milk and condiments on the trays of all of the younger children.  They stayed active in the kitchen throughout the lunch periods and after all 300 students had eaten these four high schoolers sat down and ate lunch with the food service staff.


This refueled the students and Jordan, Payton, Darrik and Blaine finished their day in the lunchroom by washing trays and scrubbing pots and pans until the kitchen was spotless and dishes were clean and ready for the following day.  The willingness of these four high school students to help on this unconventional day at South Winn is a testament to these students and the food service staff for allowing the kids to be involved in every step of the process. Food service director Laura Lectenberg was very appreciative of the students’ help and even commented, “We couldn’t have done it without them!”

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