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Richardton-Taylor School expands food options

Richardton-Taylor High School is now offering students the chance to purchase snacks and sandwiches a la carte after lunch and after school. "We decided to offer the a la carte 'cause the kids asked for more options," said secondary principal Mis...

Students wishing to purchase food must do so at the front desk. (Kayla Henson / The Dickinson Press)
Students wishing to purchase food must do so at the front desk. (Kayla Henson / The Dickinson Press)

Richardton-Taylor High School is now offering students the chance to purchase snacks and sandwiches a la carte after lunch and after school.

"We decided to offer the a la carte 'cause the kids asked for more options," said secondary principal Misti Vogle. "Part of it also was our kids needed some snacks or some nutrition between the time they get out of school and sports."

Vogle said some students are in the building as late as 7 or 8 p.m., which is a long time to go without eating.

Some students appreciate the options because they don't always like the food that is served for lunch.

"Sometimes I just don't eat because I don't like it," junior Ayzlyn Hanann said. On those days, she buys snacks.

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Head cook Jacque Kitzan said some students complained about being hungry after lunch.

"I just want to tell them if they'd actually eat what is served and take what is served, you guys wouldn't be starving, but hey, I can't make them eat." She laughed.

They're much more likely to like what's offered a la carte, as the snacks available were chosen by the students. The North Dakota Department of Public Instruction provides schools with a list of approved snacks. The school administration gave this list to students in the classroom.

"The kids just highlighted what they wanted, and then the senior class took the 7-12 list and collated it together," Vogle said.

They picked the top choices, and those were added to the a la carte menu , including GoGurt, goldfish, mini chocolate chip cookies enriched with whole grain and whole grain Pop Tarts. Having students choose is good, because Kitzen said her taste buds are totally different from theirs.

"I was very shocked when they picked those," Kitzan said of the Pop Tarts. "That was one of my other things going 'Ew, gross.' I would have to have that toasted before I could eat it. They just open the package and eat it."

In addition to the pre-packaged snacks, Kitzan makes three-inch subway sandwiches every other day to put out.

"I make like six of them and if they don't sell within two days, I throw them in the garbage because me personally, I don't want to eat a two-day-old sandwich," she said. "If I'm gonna go someplace, I want it fresh. It's like making it the night before, which is fine."

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Students wishing to purchase the items must do so with cash at the front desk.

"We're too busy in (the cafeteria) at lunchtime to do that. ... In the bigger schools, they do have like a room," Kitzan said. "They call it their school store. We're big, but we're not that big."

Vogle said they try to keep the prices low so students can afford the snacks, which range from 50 cents to $3.

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