Education

QPS food program has 'really good first day'

From left, QPS employees Sue Maggart, Susan Merreighn and Rose Behrens hand out breakfast and lunch bags to students at Bob Mays park on Wednesday, Mar. 18, 2020. QPS implemented their lunch program, whoch delivers food via buses to pick-up stations for kids who wouldn't normally get lunch while on school break due to COVID-19. | H-W Photo/Katelyn Metzger
Katelyn Metzger 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Mar. 19, 2020 12:01 am

QUINCY -- One day down, and an undetermined number of days to go for the Quincy Public Schools sack breakfast and lunch program.

"We had a really good first day of food service," QPS Food Service Director Jean Kinder said Wednesday afternoon. "We served 518 breakfasts and 518 lunches."

Kinder said 312 of each meal were served off buses that visited 25 locations across the community and 196 were picked up at the Board of Education office, 1416 Maine, and the Kroc Center, 405 Vermont.

With word still spreading about the program and with Wednesday's wet weather, "we anticipate that number increasing," Kinder said. "I'm nervous about that, but we'll do the best we can."

Meals are available at the drive-by, pickup sites from 10 a.m. to noon and bus stops take place between 10 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. Monday through Friday. A complete schedule is available online at qps.org.

Superintendent Roy Webb, at Wednesday's update meeting for district directors, said everything ran very smoothly in both transportation and food service.

"They did a great job," Webb said. "Once we get a few days of good weather, we'll get a good handle" on the numbers.

QPS plans to make the sack meals available as long as schools are shuttered due to the coronavirus outbreak. Kinder said food service staff, along with volunteers from the Crossing, prepared the sack lunches.

"Everybody was amazing, all the partners that we have," Kinder said. "So many people have offered to help. It's just figuring out who to put where. We're trying to make it up as we go."

District costs for the food program will be reimbursed based on the number of meals served.

"Our plan is to break even," Kinder said.