Avon and Region 10 Collaborate to Cut School Cafeteria Costs

The partnership has been in place over the past year.

Credit: Patch File Photo
Credit: Patch File Photo
By sharing a food services director, Avon and Region 10 schools in Burlington and Harwinton are consolidating the administrative side of its cafeterias and finding ways to reduce the costs of purchasing food for school lunches.

Avon reduced its staffing expenses by $34,000 in the past year mostly because of the new shared food services venture and a "one year only provision of service to the Reggio Magnet School," John Spang, finance director for Avon schools, said. The director spends two and a half days working in each district.
"One employee now manages nine kitchens where formerly there had been two employees," Spang said. "The impact of new federal food regulations and slightly declining enrollment have constrained revenue for this self-sustaining enterprise fund. School districts everywhere are looking for strategies like this one to adjust."

Maggie Dreher is Avon's food services director. 

The collaboration has also opened up opportunities for saving money in other areas of running the district's school cafeterias. 

"Quantity discounts on food purchases are available," Spang said. "Recent plans are to jointly enter a larger school food purchasing cooperative."

Avon schools also purchase apples from a local orchard. 


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