Next Year’s Inclusive Lunch


need a chocolate chip cookie to get you through Nazi Mind. You go to swipe your card, but your balance is at $0: your parents forgot to reload your ID with money. You are upset because you don’t get your cookie and your parents are even more upset that they’re reloading your ID for the third time this year. However, starting next year, those days of reloading will be in the past. Along with the introduction of the Learning Commons, Latin will also be including the cost of lunch in next year’s tuition, in an effort to reduce students’ miscellaneous fees in addition to the tuition and cost of project week. The steerers of this change hope to reduce students’ frustration with long check-out lines, which decreases students’ limited time to eat lunch.  A few weeks ago, a team of architects displayed next year’s cafeteria as students oohed and aahed over the fresh new designs.  However, some questions have been raised about the new lunch system next year, so here is what you need to know. Last week, I sat down with the director of operations, Mr. Guzman, who worked on most of the planning for the new system, to discuss his perspective of the change in terms of logistics and how it will affect students.  He described that they had been working on this idea for a couple years now, with the primary goal being to limit the amount of time it takes for a student to get lunch.  He explained that there will be a checkpoint in the front of the cafeteria where students will tap their student ID’s, counting towards their one available lunch for that day. The cafeteria will have a sandwich bar, action station (the same made-to-order food as we have this year), a salad bar, and pizza.  There will be no bottled beverages or prepackaged foods available for lunch in the cafeteria.  Students will also have the option of doing a lunch replacement, with more of a fast-food type cuisine at the kiosk where there will still be hot food served.  But, it is important to note that lunches will not be transferable.  So, if you skip lunch one day, you cannot use it to buy prepackaged food. Mr. Guzman also touched on the idea that students will hopefully be allocated a longer lunchtime, so students will be able to eat during their free period if they have a long lunch.  Lastly, and maybe most importantly for some, sushi will not be included in the everyday lunch in the cafeteria, although it will be available for an extra purchase at the new fourth-floor cafe.  I know, this is devastating for sushi-lovers, but it will still be available for purchase at the next fourth-floor cafe.  Additionally, the cafeteria will still serve breakfast in the morning, but similar to sushi, it will not be included in tuition. I also sat down with Ms. Prince, the head of the business office, essentially meaning that she is in charge of managing the school’s budget.  She explained that Latin wants to move away from any miscellaneous charges, such as the “senior fee,” the cost for the standard cap and gown, or the fee for the yearbook.  But now, Latin has moved to solely charging for tuition and trips, such as project week.  This will hopefully result in all Latin students, regardless of their financial freedom, sharing similar experiences at Latin.  She also noted that the data tracked by our student IDs showed that this change will be favorable for a majority of kids because the amount students spend with be reduced. The student body seemed to have differentiating opinions on the matter.  For instance, sophomore Jack Hallinan said, “I eat a ton, so this is truly a great deal for me.”  Whereas, freshman Emily Hesby said, “I think that it’s unfair to people who don’t eat lunch every day because they end up paying for things they don’t eat when their families could be saving the money to use for something better.”  Unfortunately, those who do not eat much or go out to eat are essentially paying more for tuition. Generally, I am optimistic about the success of this new change.  More students will eat in the cafeteria because the food is included in the tuition, and the lines will be shorter.  My advice is to go ahead and eat as much as you can, because why not?  ]]>