Local Child Nutrition Professionals Participate in K-12 Culinary Institute
Published by Laurie Pender on August 30, 2017

Fayetteville, NC – A group of 14 cafeteria managers from the Cumberland County School (CCS) system spent time during their summer break working with professional chefs while participating in the North Carolina K-12 Culinary Institute, held in Hoke and Sampson counties.  The managers were able to enhance their culinary skills as Child Nutrition professionals, including sampling new recipes, learning some speed-scratch cooking techniques, and practicing techniques for creating eye-appealing presentations of fresh fruits and vegetables.

The N.C. K-12 Culinary Institute, designed to enhance nutrition offerings, is funded by a U.S. Department of Agriculture Professional Standards Training Grant. The face-to-face and virtual institute was developed by the NCDPI School Nutrition Section and Chef Cyndie Story’s K-12 Culinary Team, in order to meet five core objectives:

  • Improve student health, well-being, and academic success through nutritious, appealing meals at school;
  • Increase participation in high quality, enticing school nutrition programs;
  • Expand capacity of local school nutrition programs to purchase, prepare and serve fresh, locally grown produce;
  • Increase consumption of fruits, vegetables, and whole grain-rich foods; and
  • Provide continuing education opportunities for school nutrition personnel.

The 2017 North Carolina K-12 Culinary Institute graduates included Child Nutrition Managers from:

Cape Fear High School
Reid Ross Classical School/Cross Creek & Cumberland International Early Colleges
E. Smith High School/ Ramsey Street High School
Pine Forest Middle School/Raleigh Road Elementary School
South View Middle School
Cliffdale Elementary
Wayne Collier Elementary
Gallberry Farm Elementary
Howard Hall Elementary/Long Hill Elementary
Lake Rim Elementary
Montclair Elementary
Stedman Elementary/Stedman Primary
Stoney Point Elementary

With the eight cafeteria managers who completed the training in 2016 and Menu Planners Carissa Gemar Harris and Linda Johnson and Cafeteria Training Manager Mary Novotney, the CCS has a total of 25 child nutrition professionals who have graduated from the professional chef designed and lead NC K-12 Culinary Institute.

The graduates are deemed Chef Ambassadors and will share their training with fellow Child Nutrition professionals in Cumberland County through a ‘train it forward’ program. Recipes from the K-12 Culinary Institute that will be featured on the lunch menus throughout the school year will include Buffalo chicken on flatbread, stir-fry California blend, Southwest chicken salad, and more.

Participants in the recent Culinary Institute at the Hoke County Location

K-12 Culinary Institute Participants (Hoke County location) pictured are (l-r) Cafeteria Manager Amanda Mooney (PFMS), Cafeteria Manager Michelle McCall (SVMS), Cafeteria Manager Tammy West (EESHS), Cafeteria Manager Karlene Richardson (LRES), Cafeteria Manager Elizabeth Newton (Montclair), Cafeteria Manager Teresa Huff (RRCS), Cafeteria Manager Kim Mitchell (CES), and Culinary Institute Chef Cyndie Story.

Culinary Institute Participants at the Sampson County Location

K-12 Culinary Institute Participants (Sampson County location) pictured are (l-r) Culinary Institute Chef Lydia West, Cafeteria Manager Donna Macmaster (GFES), Cafeteria Manager Traci Gorham (SES), Cafeteria Manager Carla Barrett (CFHS), Cafeteria Manager Michael Parker (SPES), Cafeteria Manager Danielle Carpenter (CWCES), CNS Training Manager Mary Novotney, Cafeteria Manager Sherri Rambeaut (HHES), and Culinary Institute Chef Kelly Waldron.


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