Poplar Bluff school district’s food provider gets annual evaluation

Poplar Bluff School Dist. to decide on keeping current food service provider

POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) - A couple of months ago, Chartwells had issues involving food storage for the Poplar Bluff School District.

In January, school leaders responded after food was found in a Poplar Bluff kindergarten center food cooler with mouse feces and urine on it. Parents sounded off in an open meeting.

Poplar Bluff's food provider had its annual evaluation on Thursday, April 21 with the school board.

Chartwell's contract is up in the fall and the evaluation was about what the district needs.

According to Communications Coordinator Tim Krakowiak, Chartwell's food service contract is put out for bid every four years. The four years will be up next school year, during the 2016-2017 academic year.

The Poplar Bluff administration recommends that the board of education starts the bidding process in the fall, because it takes time to transition to a new food service provider, if they should decide to do so.

The district wants to invest more into its facilities, right now there is conversation about the best way to serve it's students.

Krakowiak said there are the three options that have been discussed to store food for the district.

One option would be converting the current high school, future middle school, industrial arts building into a storage facility. Another option would be to add additional storage to some of the smaller kitchen facilities at the individual schools. The last option would be to build a new stand alone facility.

There would need to be a professional study done if there is a new building. Dille and Traxel Architecture has been hired and charged with conducting the study said Krakowiak.

There is a food service committee that was also started to decide what is best for serving the district. The committee was built as a checks and balances system which includes students, parents, community leaders and school officials.

Krakowiak said the date for the food service committee's first meeting is unknown but will be soon.

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