Hillsboro schools to see change in food service next year

Students will see changes in USD 410 cafeteria food service when school starts in August.

“Kids will have choices to meet their needs,” Scott Murphy of Thrive Nutrition Services told members of the Board of Education at their May 22 special meeting.

Murphy explained the company’s program and fielded questions prior to the board’s approval of Thrive as the district’s food management company for the upcoming school year.

Thrive, headquartered in Sioux City, S.D., is a family-owned company and integrates its services into the schools’ current food service operation.

“It’s a very easy program,” Murphy said about the company’s approach, adding that it will take a while for children to get used to it because involves making choices.

For middle and high school students, food will be available at different stations, he said, while elementary students will have a couple of entrée choices.

Parents and students can access menus for upcoming weeks via a phone app or web page, and student accounts will have a declining balance.

“Our goal is to get kids to eat,” Murphy said.

The current number of staff will be used, he said, adding that Thrive also can provide catering services for the public.

“We believe in working with the community,” Murphy said.

Heinrichs said the district and Thrive will negotiate annually for the next five years but can withdrew if needed.

About specific implementation details, Superintendent Max Heinrichs said, “We’ve got some things we have to think through.”

In other business, the board:

◼ approved disposal of district property that included a 47-passenger 1999 Ford bus, a 2000 Chevy Suburban and a John Deere 2520 tractor with a loader and blade.

◼ met in executive session to discuss resignations and employment of non-elected personnel, followed by approving the resignation of Carol Leppke as Hillsboro Elementary School cook, effective May 17, and the hiring of Leppke as HES custodian beginning May 20, and a supplemental contract for Demetrius Cox as head football coach for Hillsboro High School.

Board member Kim Klein attended the meeting via phone.