We were more than glad when members of the Carrollton school district board of education voted, in effect, to end the pre-packaged meal program.
This is certainly a step in the right direction in getting some of the students back eating at and supporting the cafeteria.
There is little doubt that the pre-packaged meal experiment was not a good one and drove a number of students away.
But unless the board takes a hard look at a couple other areas, it probably should not expect a big change, especially at the high school level.
First, during the past few years seniors have been allowed to leave the campus for lunch. That affects a sizable percentage of the high school student body. Other students have their parents drop off lunches purchased elsewhere. Still others are allowed to call local eateries and place delivery orders. Others leave the campus with their parents, who have them excused for lunch.
In our opinion, it is not just the pre-packaged meals that separated the cafeteria and students, but also the lax policy of pretty much allowing students to do as they please.
In a sense, a culture of “anything goes” has been created over a period of time and it will take time to change or reverse it.
To expect the cafeteria to operate in “the black” without addressing this area, would be somewhat of a pipe dream.
Better food and food presentation will bring some back to the cafeteria line, but establishing new rules (or strictly adhering to existing ones) and then making certain they are followed by all students, employees and administrators alike, will give the cafeteria program a real fighting chance in providing nutritious meals and operating at a break-even or better monetary level.