Food safety top priority at WES despite lack of prep kitchen

BY Jan Murray jmurray@southeastsun.com

Food safety top priority at WES despite lack of prep kitchen
At an Aug. 18 political forum the subject of food quality at Windham Elementary School was brought up by a candidate for mayor. Specifically, the complaint alleged was in regards to food being served to WES students cold, after being transported from Daleville High School where food is prepared.WES does not have a formal kitchen for food preparation.“Cold food is not served at WES,” said Superintendent Dr. Diane Flournoy, adding that the elementary school administration has had no such complaints in regards to food temperature.“Serving safe food is a critical responsibility and as the superintendent and director of Child Nutrition I am assured that our school nutrition team has created a culture of food safety within our school community. Our food safety behaviors are routinely practiced, demonstrated and viewed as a value,” explained Flournoy.The superintendent said that while building a full-service lunchroom is in the school system’s long-term capital plans, for now, the long-standing practice of food preparation at the high school with immediate transfer to WES will continue.“Lunch for WES follows a monitored transporting process. The food is transported in warmers for the hot foods and cold cart for the cold. This is to maintain temperatures of products,” said Flournoy explaining that cold foods are kept at 41 degrees Fahrenheit or below and hot foods are kept at 135 degrees Fahrenheit or above while “frozen foods are kept frozen.”She said all food is transported in “containers and carriers that have been approved by the National Sanitation Foundation and by the state or local health department” and that the food temperatures are checked before and after loading into containers for transport and serving. In addition, she said that the timeframe for transport is kept to a minimum with a “max time of 10 minutes” from the prep site/DHS kitchen to the satellite site/WES.“Once it arrives at WES it is plugged back up or kept cold with a frozen pan at the  bottom of the cold cart,” Flournoy said. “The Daleville City Schools Child Nutrition Program has a developed and implemented a written food safety plan based on Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points Principles at both the high school and WES.  HACCP principles are documented Standard Operating Procedures. It is by way of our food safety plan we have a daily systematic approach to identifying, evaluating, and controlling food safety. All Child Nutrition Program managers and employees are ServeSafe Certified.”
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CITY OF DALEVILLE ALABAMA
740 S. Daleville Ave * Daleville, Alabama 36322 * 334.598.2345


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