With the support of the Whatcom Community Foundation, a dedicated group of community members, parents and staff began a movement over ten years ago toward healthier, more wholesome meals in our school cafeterias.
The movement to re-invent school lunch made a huge leap forward with the voter-approved 2013 bond that financed a Central Kitchen, supported with additional funds from the Whatcom Community Foundation. Simultaneously, advisory groups that focused on Farm to School, Food Services Visioning, development and implementation of the Good Food Promise, and Central Kitchen design continued to meet.
Bringing in additional staff to run a scratch-made model was the next major step and that is why the district brought on executive chef Patrick Durgan (in January 2017) and chef and culinary program supervisor Mataio Gillis (in February 2019), and operations supervisor Lindsay Ahrens (in January 2021). These were critical staff to transition to new menus, recipes and operating procedures.
In 2020, food services staff won the One Schoolhouse Award for their work providing food to kids and families during the pandemic.