The Student News Site of Leominster High School

The Devil's Advocate

The Student News Site of Leominster High School

The Devil's Advocate

The Student News Site of Leominster High School

The Devil's Advocate

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A Closer Look at School Lunch

Editor’s Note: This is one of a series of stories investigating subjects of interest to the students of LHS. Have an idea for a story? Let us know.

Lunch is every student’s favorite time of the day. When the bell rings we rush to the lunch line, pushing our way to the front. But have you ever wondered what’s actually in our school lunch? 

What’s our food made of?  Is it homemade?  How is our lunch prepared? Where does it come from? Is it healthy? 

We interviewed a lunch lady of 6 years, Donna DiMarzil, to answer some of these questions. 

DiMarzil shared that the majority of the breakfast is premade, except the scrambled eggs. 

They are required to follow specific guidelines while preparing food. “We always have gloves on if we’re cutting something, with a cut glove so you don’t cut yourself,” DiMarzil said. “We always have to wash our hands so we don’t cross contaminate products.” 

DiMarzil believes our food is much healthier than it used to be, but it’s not completely homemade like it was in previous years. Due to the increase of students in the school, it’s impossible to prepare food made from scratch with such little time in the day. 

“We have a nutritionist on staff, so when the menus are being created for the week, the numbers are paid attention to,” DiMarzil said. They are required to follow a guide of the amount of protein, carbs, vegetables, etc. that are included in each meal.

She informed us that some of the food is homemade, like the macaroni and cheese and Shepards Pie, but other meals come in boxes already partially made. 

You might be wondering where these boxes come from and whether they’re reliable or not?, We’re here to give you all the details. 

“The boxes come from different companies, one of them is Sysco and the other is called Gordons. The boxes come in twice a week, Tuesdays and Thursdays,” DiMarzil said. 

We interviewed Bob Burr and Jackie Klayman from the company Chartwells, which is the company Leominster Public Schools uses to create our meals and menus. 

Chartwells orders their meals from the company Gordons. They have to estimate how much food to order and Burr confirmed they do check expiration dates on everything. 

“We have to follow USDA regulations. The government gives us regulations and we have to abide by that,” Burr said. He explained that every meal has specific requirements they must meet. 

Jackie Klayman, Chartwell Dietitian, explained that a lot goes into making sure guidelines are met.  

“We have to offer fruits, vegetables, milk, along with protein and grain,” Klayman said. “We have a system that tells (us) how much of each category is in each recipe, so that’s how we know we’re serving the right amount per meal.”

Hannah Wells working in the school cafeteria. (Ava)
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About the Contributors
Ava Troest
Ava Troest, Reporter
Ava is a senior at Leominster High School. She is one of four captains of the girls' soccer team, and also plays for FC Stars. She has played soccer since she was three years old and has been a member of the girls Varsity soccer program all four years of high school. She plans to further her academic career and play soccer at Franklin Pierce University. Her goal is to have a career in Psychology. Ava is taking Journalism because she loves to write, she’s also very interested in discussing news and current events. In Ava's free time she enjoys skiing in the winter and going to the gym.   
Nicole Kelly
Nicole Kelly, Reporter
Nicole Kelly is a Senior at Leominster High School.  She is captain of the girl's soccer team and is also on the basketball and track teams. In her free time Nicole likes to go to the gym and run. Nicole loves to write and research and that’s why she chose journalism.   

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