CI Hero: Dunlap School District food service director leads the team through a pandemic, puts students nutrition first

CI Heroes

DUNLAP, Ill. (WMBD) — Nurturing nutrition throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Dunlap’s district food service staff makes balanced meals a top priority for its students. The staff makes meals daily.

“They stepped up to the plate,” said Lisa Leitner, Director of Food Service. “They didn’t think twice going out and delivering meals about what could happen to them…that’s just how they are and I’m just so proud of them.”

With more than two decades of experience, Leitner said nutrition has always been the first concern.

“I have eight schools, 47 staff members, and every one of them has just stepped up and the kids are number one,” said Leitner. “That’s why they’re here.”

The school’s superintendent said the staff has rose to the challenges presented by the global virus.

“We’re really focusing on the positive of ‘how can we make this work to the benefit of our students’ and I think that’s a testament to their attitude and their approach to things,” said Scott Dearman.

Dunlap schools began the year with cold sack lunches, but have since found ways to bring back warm meals. The USDA made all school lunches free until June 2021.

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