Arlington, Texas - Arlington ISD schools are facing shortages of cafeteria supplies and food due to growing nationwide shipping delays.
Common supplies, such as food trays and plastic silverware , and lunch staples, such as chicken and macaroni & cheese, are in short supply right now in cafeterias district-wide.
According to AISD officials, schools will not offer traditional Thanksgiving meals this month because of the shortage. The district recently ordered 300 cases of green beans and 450 cases of sliced beef; only eight cases of green beans and 11 cases of beef have arrived.
The district is also offering fewer choices than usual. High schools cafeterias usually serve 16 menu entrees. Now, they only have three to offer students.
To ensure the district has enough food for students, a dedicated purchasing team scours the internet daily to buy food and non-food items like trays, according to district officials. Food services employees will open the loading dock any time a truck can deliver, even in the middle of the night or on a weekend.
Other schools in North Texas and across the nation are facing similar issues. In September, the federal government pledged to invest up to $1.5 billion this year to help school cafeterias struggling to feed students.
The district released a statement preparing students and families to expect several changes in the cafeteria.
Arlington ISD: https://www.aisd.net/district-news/arlington-isds-food-services-impacted-by-nationwide-shortages/
The Dallas Morning News: https://www.dallasnews.com/news/2021/11/08/arlington-school-cafeterias-scramble-to-feed-students-amid-shortages-shipping-delays/
Education Week: https://www.edweek.org/policy-politics/feds-pump-1-5-billion-extra-toward-schools-to-address-cafeteria-food-shortage/2021/09