Behind the Scenes: Part 1–the Cafeteria

Andrew Velarde


Lunch lady serves food to students during lunch A.

Andrew Velarde, Managing Editor of Videography and Photography

They walk into the cafeteria turn on the lights and put their hair nets on. They take the chicken out of the freezer and start scooping a multitude of fruits. Once the fifth period bell rings they get to their stations, put a smile on their face, and get ready to serve lunch to many of the students.

The cafeteria recently celebrated National School Lunch Week throughout the United States. During that week the cafeteria had an assortment of different foods, and the goal was to recognize school lunch programs across the country.

“I love it,” cafeteria manager Shannon Stevens said. “I started out with little kids and then came to high school. I love high school.”

The cafeteria helps make and prepare both lunch and breakfast for many students every day. They have a variety of food that changes from day to day.

When preparing food the cafeteria staff has to adhere to certain regulations.

“[A] diffcult part of the job is trying to figure out what everybody’s going to eat on a daily basis,” Stevens said. “Sometimes you think they are going to go for pizza but they go for something else or they take the thing that is not the most popular on the list which causes other lunches not to have it.”

The cafeteria adheres to the regulations from the Food and Nutrition Service and National School Lunch Program. The sodium regulation allows for sodium intake below 2,300 milligrams per day, which limits the food that they can order. There are simular guidelines for sugar and total calories.

“We have to watch how much salt we are allowed to put in stuff,” Stevens said. “As time goes on we are fading out of that.”

The cafeteria usually will have two entrée options with some sort of carb option and both fruits and vegetables. They also have other snack food options for more money, which includes drinks, chips, ice cream, and other small sweets.

“I would never do anything different,” Stevens said. “[There’s] just something about the kids that are just amazing.”

Update:  Check out Behind the Scenes, Part II–Filmmaking at