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Minor corrections that needed to be made to the Columbus High School food service program got attention on social media earlier this month. Improvements were made immediately as required by the inspection.

COLUMBUS – A health inspection last fall detailing some required improvements at the Columbus High food service program got some notice on social media earlier this month, the same day the school got a second checkup that revealed only minor corrections that needed to be made.

“Health inspections are a snapshot of a moving train,” said Bryce Bonet, food service director for Lunchtime Solutions based in Sioux City, Iowa. “We live with the results until the next inspection.”

On Feb. 7, a photo of the report of the high school’s Sept. 26 health inspection was posted online. The photo of the inspection results was shared online, stirring some comments and grumbling about the school’s new food service program.

The inspection notice, on display in the dining area of the school’s cafeteria, detailed corrections that needed to be made to the food service program right away.

The inspection determined the cafeteria’s dishwasher and serving table were not holding heating temperature, dated refried beans that were stored too long, caulking missing between some tile and a wall and an employee was observed forgetting to change gloves when moving between stacking and serving areas.

The improvements were made immediately as required by the inspection, Bonet said. However, the report from that September inspection was required to be posted until the next scheduled inspection, which came on Feb. 7.

The new inspection report, which cites errors in labeling sanitizer bottles, not having a sanitizer bucket (used for wiping down tables and other surfaces) in one of three serving areas and calls for better cleaning of a food slicer, has replaced the prior inspection results.

“Everything is fine now,” said Bonet, who has tried to be proactive in posting inspection results in the dining area for all to see as opposed to the serving area where groups of 300 to 400 kids at a time hustle through lunchtime food lines.

“I want the results to be outside of the cafeteria area in the interest of transparency to show people what we’re working on,” Bonet said.

The food service director said the school’s move to a totally closed campus when classes started last fall has drawn complaints from some students. Last year seniors were allowed to leave campus for lunch.

Meanwhile, the number of meals served daily has been climbing steadily for months.

“We’re serving 3,600 meals per day,” Bonet said.



Jim Osborn is a news reporter at The Columbus Telegram.

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