NEWS HEADLINES

Paradise School Board reconfigures meal service

By Kristen Tribe | Published Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Paradise school board is cooking up a new plan for the district’s cafeterias.

Trustees Monday night approved a bid from Aramark to provide food services for the district, starting this fall.

Interim Superintendent Robert Criswell said it would be five years before the district sees a profit – but over the years, food services has regularly run a deficit, so almost anything would be an improvement.

In the first year, expenditures with Aramark are projected to be $498,062, while revenue through meal purchases is expected to be $391,125 – a loss of $106,937. The losses are projected to decrease annually until year five, when a net $307 profit is expected.

“We’ve historically lost $100,000-plus on this thing forever, so this isn’t out of line,” Criswell said. “We’re not going to get rich off this thing, but if we can break even, it’ll be all right.”

Paradise ISD plans to partner with neighboring Boyd ISD to make it more economically feasible for both districts.

Criswell said he thought the loss could be decreased if more students choose to participate in the program.

“I think it may be better than that by the time we get more kids eating,” he said. “We’ve got to have more participation if we’re going to try to make things break even.”

Criswell said all current food service employees will get to choose whether they become an Aramark employee or remain employees of the school district, but no one should lose their job.

“I think it’s time to try something new,” Criswell said.

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