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JCHS Chef’s Special Makes its Grand Entrance Back to the Cafeteria

Photo courtesy of Pilar Jacobs.


Prepare for the return of the chef’s special! After vanishing from the cafeteria following the Pandemic, the chef’s special makes its return back to the cafeteria! The special return to the cafeteria after being missing for the past 3 years. In the past month, the chef and cafeteria staff are proud to officially announce that the daily rotating meals are back! 


In December, head food advisor Ms. Kelly requested for student council representatives to meet and discuss the state of the school’s food options, how the cafeteria could be improved, and student input for the future. During the meeting, many students stated how they felt that the options at school were repetitive, especially for people who purchase lunch every day. Many felt that there was a lack of variety. Ms Kelly then brought up the idea of bringing back the chef’s special. The Chef’s Special is the Hot Lunch of the Day. It is usually a food item that is not served daily in the cafeteria. She asked for student input and hoped the students might react if this were to make a return. During the Pandemic, there was an issue with possible cross-contamination, meaning that it was increasingly difficult for the cafeteria staff to be able to safely serve a hot bar meal. During this time, they had to resort to prepackaged meals. 


Vice Principal Ms. Schweitzer was also in attendance during the food advisory meeting. Her opinion regarding the special is, “I think the return of the Chef’s Special is great for our JCHS students.  It gives students the opportunity to have fresh food served hot and provides additional lunch choices.  Students that met with Ms. Kelly also shared their desire to have soup available during the winter months, so I applaud the food services department for honoring that request.  I’ve had some of the meals and soups and they have been excellent!  I hope more students take advantage of this opportunity–especially those who eat in the gym and may not know it’s available to them!” 


 Following its return, I reached out to a handful of students to solicit their feedback and opinions. So far the return of the specials had nothing but positive reviews! Sophomore Nora Schied expressed her opinion on the chef’s special’s return: “This is definitely one of the things I am most excited about for the rest of the year. I enjoy occasionally purchasing food from the cafeteria and the idea of the chef’s special is great! I haven’t gotten around to trying it yet but I look forward to doing so soon!” 


In an interview with Ms. Kelly, I asked her, “Since the special’s return, have you noticed more students ordering it compared to other lunches? If you haven’t seen much of an increase, why do you think this might be?


Her response was, “No, not really. They are just not used to this being open. We have tried making announcements, and putting out signs as well.” The hope is that in the coming months, more students will be made aware of its opening and utilize it. 


The return of a unique daily lunch is especially exciting for students who eat lunch at school every day. With the special making its return, there will be even more options for students. Additionally following the food advisory meeting, the hope is to get more student input on the menu at JCHS. By asking for students’ opinions, the food services department hopes to get a sense of the popularity of certain meals and food items. These suggestions may even end up on the menu one day! 


Every day at the start of block two, during the announcements, students can listen to hear what the daily special is. 

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