Food for Thought

Nolan Chapman, Editor-In-Chief


“We are doing everything in our power to constantly improve the quality and choices of our food. We are featuring chicken wings and sushi in the month of November. That’s right; sushi as an option for our High School students. This shows that we are thinking outside the box and trying new and exciting items. We also have other concepts we are bringing in to keep our menus fresh, new and exciting. When allowed by government regulations, we make changes such as bringing in new white flour pizza dough, biscuits, and tortillas. The majority of our entrées are made from scratch by our staff in each kitchen. That means your food is prepared the morning of, right in the kitchen at your campus,” Nolan Mitchell explained, the nutritional services director of GISD, on what he and the nutritional services department is currently doing to improve the food served in Georgetown Independent School District.

Mr. Mitchell is the Nutrition Services Director for GISD. Essentially, Mr. Mitchell’s job “entails the complete running of the Child Nutrition Services Department.” Additionally, Mr. Mitchell makes “decisions as to what food we bring in, manage the financials aspects for the department, and makes sure all staffing needs are being met in all of our kitchens.”

“We would also like to change the misnomer that our food is like it was many years ago. We have over 19 choices in our High Schools and it is more like a mall food court than just a cafeteria. Our Middle Schools have at least 9 concepts with a Snack Bar for their choices and all of our Elementaries have at least 4 options to choose from, 3 hot items and 1 cold. We have a nutritious salad bar at every campus where our students have access to fresh fruits and vegetables at no extra cost,” Mr. Mitchell explained on what he wants to change about the nutritional services at GISD.

However, Mr. Mitchell isn’t the only source of input for what appears on the school cafeteria, for he also relies “on student and parent input as to what we put on the menus.” According to Mr. Mitchell, there is no better source for finding out “what the students like than the students themselves.” He described the method that the nutritional services department uses to find out what the students like through “student surveys and participation of students dining with us in the cafeterias.”

Additionally, school food can improve things other than just a student’s morale. According to studies, higher quality foods served in high school cafeterias leads to better student behavior, physical development, and cognitive abilities; student concentration in classes and memorization. This has been described as a “cheap but effective” way of improving student learning and an easy way to make students happy.