Administrators at Nittany Christian School see a new kitchen as more than just a place where food is prepared and served.
Additions to the school’s kitchen, which were started in September, are complete.
Principal Nancy Eberly said the new kitchen will help implement an environmentally friendly atmosphere by reducing waste and advocating for recycling programs.
New kitchen helps with school’s environmentally friendly programs
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She said the school eliminated Styrofoam trays, plastic utensils and prepackaged foods by working with local farms to provide produce for the school. They also compost, and work with the kindergarten to eighth-grade student body to recycle.
Eberly said the environmental effort helps instill the works of God in people’s lives.
“Jesus used food in several of his miracles, and we look at this new kitchen and lunch program as a way for God to work in their lives,” Eberly said.
Planning started about two years ago.
$40,000 kitchen upgrade completed at Nittany Christian School
By last year, the Parent Teacher Fellowship helped raise about $20,000 for kitchen upgrades. The remainder of the balance, about another $20,000, came from donations and contributions.
“It was a lot of money, but we think it’s worth it,” Eberly said.
The former kitchen at the school’s 1221 W. Whitehall Road location did not meet the code for the use of a commercial kitchen. That prevented school’s food service staff from cooking and serving their own meals.
Instead, Eberly said the school was provided with school lunches from the State College Area School District.
Now, we’re able to offer a healthy and affordable school lunch with minimal processing.
Nancy Eberly, principal
“We’d get them shipped, but they were not the quality of meals we were looking for,” Eberly said. “Now, we’re able to offer a healthy and affordable school lunch with minimal processing.”
Food Service Director Colette Moriarity works in the school’s kitchen, which she described as a revolving door of food preparation.
She generally starts preparing meals the day before they’re served.
Menu items, which are approved by a registered dietitian, include chicken noodle soup, baked ham, pumpkin French roast and macaroni and cheese.
New appliances help with food preparation
Moriarity is now able to use the new kitchen appliances, including a commercial range and steamer, an additional sink and a dishwasher, to help make the homemade meals.