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District considers food service change

During the March 13 Whitehall-Coplay School Board committee meetings, Business Manager John Malay suggested a food service management team be hired to replace the position of Food Service Director Wayne Walp, who has announced his plan to retire this year.

Board members questioned how this would affect current employees, and they were reassured their status would remain the same.

Malay explained “meals need to fall within state guidelines,” so the food service management would have to be familiar with these requirements.

He said he is looking to “put more food on the plate but less calories for secondary school students.”

The board would continue to set the price for meals and make the decision to participate in a three-year free lunch program.

The request for bids will be advertised and open to questions until April 11. The questions will be answered by April 14, and the bids would be opened May 1.

The contract would start July 1.

The education committee presented a review of the Feb. 17 and March 10 professional development days. The subject offerings for Feb. 17 included some mandated classes, but the staff could choose from options March 10.

Two sessions - one morning and one afternoon - gave the staff the option to select two classes. Two of the most popular course offerings were decreasing stress and organization skills.

The five-year review of academic achievement was overseen by WCSD Superintendent Dr. Robert Steckel.

Steckel surmised, as the information from the PSSA achievement summary suggests, like all schools, WCSD did not have any assessments during 2019-20.

All grades and all subjects dipped during the 2020-21 school year. The “dip” appears to be a nationwide pattern, Steckel said, adding WCSD is rebounding from the pandemic in all grades and all classes.

The personnel/staffing committee noted job descriptions are reviewed whenever a position opens, such as for retirement. Discussion regarding creating a position to work with gifted students is being explored.

The regular school board meeting will be held 7 p.m. March 27.