Lindbergh Board of Education passes policy changes for food, transportation and student health

Lindbergh Board of Education passes policy changes for food, transportation and student health

By Lucas Irizarry, Staff Reporter

The Lindbergh Board of Education approved changes June 16 to a few policies, including food and transportation prices, as well as changes to the pandemic response plan.

The first item approved by the board was the new and improved Pandemic Response Plan. Chief Human Resources Officer Brian McKinney said the plan is a revised version of the old Greenlight Plan and it can now apply to all airborne viruses.

“It’s designed to be flexible and provide agility. As we learned during COVID-19, things change very quickly,” McKinney said. “One thing the new plan does not have is automatic triggers based on a single metric, such as positive cases.”

This means the plan does not immediately instate masking if positivity reaches a certain point — instead the district will use all pertinent data to make the decision. 

McKinney said the plan was consulted and approved by the “medical community” and the 60 person taskforce who created the Greenlight Plan.

The second item approved by the board was a change to the terms of its contract with First Student Transportation. The change was an amendment to the annual escalation rate of the contract, moving it from 3 to 3.9 percent for the last two years of the agreement.

Chief Financial Officer Joël Scheible said the change is a result of the need to increase driver pay in the midst of driver shortages. She said the rate change will keep the district competitive in hiring.

Scheible highlighted a bill that passed at the state level which will give districts a one-time payment to help with transportation funding. She said the money will provide much needed relief with the high gas prices.

“I haven’t seen it in my career. Unfortunately it’s a one-time funding … It’s about $600,000 for our district for one year,” Scheible said. 

The final item approved by the board was renewal of its food service contract with Southwest Foodservice Excellence.

The renewal features slight increases to administrative fees, management fees and the meal equivalent factor. 

“We’ve been with SFE (for two years) and they really haven’t had a good year since they started. As soon as we hired them, March of the next year we went into COVID, so some of the programming they wanted to put in place we’re hoping they can execute this year,” Scheible said. 

Schieble said meal choices, salad bars, brand name pizza and other factors will be implemented as the year progresses. 

Going forward the free and reduced lunch application is expected to move online, with a pilot already underway at summer schools. Scheible said the application moving online should streamline the process.

At the same meeting as part of the consent agenda, the board approved breakfast and lunch meal prices for the 2022-2023 school year. Food has been free in public schools during much of the pandemic due to a waiver from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, but that free-meal waiver expired at the end of the 2021-2022 school year.

The full-pay price of breakfast is $1.65 for both elementary and secondary grade-levels, the elementary full-pay price of lunch is $3.15 and the secondary full-pay price of lunch is $3.30. Adult breakfast and lunch is $2.75 and $4.30 respectively.