Our Stories

Behind the Scenes of the "Boxed Lunch" Program

November 2, 2016 by Blake Yedwab (Community) Maia Magder (Community)

When JPDS-NC began more than 25 years ago, there were only a handful of students. At that time, many things were handled by parent volunteers, including lunch. Parents ordered pizza for the students, and distributed it as needed. All of these years later, lunch is still organized by a dedicated group of parent volunteers. Now referred to as “Boxed Lunch,” Primary Parents provides students and staff members with food options for each day of the school week and challah is available to take home each Friday. With over three hundred fifty students and staff members potentially ordering boxed lunch and challah, with customized options for day of the week and lunch choices, this is no small feat.

Primary Parents works with four different food vendors in order to provide a nice variety of options. Early in the summer, our parent volunteers begin the process of working with the vendors to determine menu and pricing. When ordering, students and staff members sign up for a specific day of the week to receive boxed lunch. It takes time and a lot of checking and rechecking the calendar to make sure we have the correct number of days for ordering and pricing.

Once we know our exact numbers, it’s time to load it all onto the Primary Parents website. This is the job of yet another volunteer who is responsible for making sure the content is up-to-date and correct and that the links to ordering boxed lunch and challah work.
This year, we were determined to have the system go live August 1. We wanted our families and staff to have boxed lunch available on the very first day of school.

Once the ordering system is in place, Primary Parents is then responsible for ensuring that the orders placed are correctly delivered. This involves even more volunteers who make certain to be at school the first week to organize the delivery of boxed lunches and challah to students and staff.

Once the year is underway, the changes come. Changing orders, cancelling orders, allergy-dependent orders. Primary Parents works with every family to make sure their needs are met. We close down the ordering system once all of the changes have been made. We re-open the system in January for families and staff to order boxed lunch and challah for the second half of the year, and it all starts over again.

Primary Parents thanks Bonnie Roskes, Rachel Federowicz, Anneben Levine, Karen Alpert, and Katie Schenk for the work that they do to make Boxed Lunch and Challah delivery an essential part of the JPDS-NC experience!