School cafeterias continue to serve students on snow days

Published: Dec. 11, 2018 at 9:12 PM EST
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Lingering snow cancelled classes at Highland Park Elementary for a second day, but Building Manager Harry Barlow was out scraping ice from the sidewalk, while Elpidia Jusino and Teresa Wimmer were serving up hot meals inside.

"We are so proud to be here today," said Jusino, the Cafeteria Assistant Manager, "for the community that comes to us, our children and parents."

"And it brings community together," said cafeteria employee Teresa Wimmer. "They may not know these people. They may live on another street or another part of the neighborhood. They get to meet new people too."

Highland Park Elementary was one of six Roanoke City schools offering hot and cold entrees, and plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Rubin Stokes brought his son Kah-yier, a fourth grader at Highland Park.

"I'm a single parent, and I'm on a set income," Stokes told reporters, "so this helps out a lot."

Mark Crummey is the school's Principal.

"It's just a nice opportunity," he said, "to give families a little less to worry about on these snow days."

With a majority of the students in Roanoke City Public Schools qualifying for free and reduced price lunches, school leaders said they know there's a need.

A federal food program will pay for the students' meals.

"I think it is a valuable service that our parents and our children can benefit from, to come out and get a nutritious meal," said Director of Food Nutrition Ellen Craddock.

And many did, with the school system serving up 77 meals on Tuesday.

Roanoke City Public Schools will open the same schools on Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to feed students. They include Fallon Park Elementary, Highland Park Elementary, Hurt Park Elementary, Lincoln Terrace Elementary, Westside Elementary and William Fleming High School.