Global supply challenges impacting local school districts food items, technology

Local News

PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Local school districts are feeling the impact of global supply chain issues.

Dr. Joseph Sander, Washington Community High School’s assistant superintendent, said each year changes in inventory are expected, but global supply chain struggles have complicated things further.

“It’s almost like on a weekly basis things we’re seeing things that we would normally order, we can’t get in,” Dr. Sander said.

Sander said the demand for items ranges from technology to lunch products, like Baked Lays.

“That is the approved snack chip we can sell on our campus, there’s been a shortage in that product,” Sander said.

This particular need is now caused the district to alter its nutrition code to get by.

“They’ve authorized us to sell other chips that in the past haven’t met the nutrition guidelines so that we can offer something to our students,” Sander said.

Leaders at Limestone Community High School said their district has experienced shortages of food items as well, including packs of water.

Principal Charlie Zimmerman said the district is also having a tough time getting its hands on an important piece of technology.

“Our firewall, we had a piece we needed to purchase, and the chips were not quite ready,” Zimmerman said.

Zimmerman said this means slower internet speeds during a time when there’s an emphasis on tech.

“That gets a little hard on our teachers that have planned, I’m going to use the internet, this is how we’re going use it in what capacity,” Zimmerman said.

Despite the supply chain struggles, both school leaders said staff are doing the best with what resources they have until the global issue is corrected.

“I think they’ve done an excellent job rolling with those thing that’ve been going on and finding new ways to attack and go after certain goals for our students,” Zimmerman said.

Zimmerman and Sander said there’s also been a shortage of items like paint for athletic fields. Sander explains his district may begin purchasing the paint in larger quantities when it’s available, instead of buying as needed.

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