By Roxanne “Roxi” Knops 2015-11-19 13:15:08
The Highs and Lows of Technology How many of you remember school nutrition before online payments? Before keypads and PINs at the POS? Before we relied so heavily on computers, emails and smartphones? When I started my adventure in school foodservice (as it was called back in 1994), we sold paper lunch tickets at the entrance of the school each morning. We had to write down the starting and ending number of each type of ticket, balance the cashbox and make sure the money taken matched the tickets sold. We also had to mail out the tickets for the free or reduced-price meals, and again, keep a tally of the numbers sent to each household. Then, there was the matter of collecting the tickets from students as they came through the lunch line. There were torn tickets, washed-and-dried tickets, muddy tickets—not to mention the lost tickets and the tears that accompanied that dilemma! At the end of service, we had to sort out the tickets according to free, reduced or full pay, count them, record them and then destroy them. I don’t miss that whole process at all! When we were told we were “moving up” in the technology world and getting computers and keypads for lunchtime, I was scared! It was new and different—and was not really one for change back then. I think everyone was a little apprehensive. It took training and a willingness to learn, and it’s been wonderful…as long as the technology is actually working properly. When it is not, life in school nutrition can be a nightmare. The worst, to me, is the morning that you fire up the computer, ready for kids to come through for breakfast, and something’s gone wrong. After the first time that happened, I always kept a student roster printed out (hiding all private information, of course) ready to be pulled out of the drawer and used to check off names of students as they came through the line. It took longer, but it worked. While I appreciate all of the advances that technology has allowed us to make in the business of school nutrition, instances like these remind me that the most important part of our work is the human side of our job. We work with what we have, in the limited time frame that we have, to do whatever is needed to get the students fed! Help SNA Reach You! SNA Membership Your professional Association strives to provide you with the most relevant K-12 foodservice information and services. Because we want you to get the most of your membership, we want to be certain that we have your correct mailing address, email address and phone number. This will also ensure that you receive your membership and/or certificate renewals, School Nutrition magazine and the latest news and updates emailed to your inbox in a timely fashion. Staying in touch with SNA is easy! Go to www.schoolnutrition.org and click on the red “Login to My Account” button in the upper right-hand corner. Enter your user name and password to login. (Or click Member Registration to create an account.) Once logged in, click on the Member Record tab and select Member Contact Information. Update any needed information and click Save Changes. Need help? Contact the SNA Service Center at (800) 877-8822 or firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. Become a VIP @ ANC 2017 SNA Membership Recruitment Help SNA recruit new members, and your reward could be the chance to win a VIP registration to SNA’s Annual National Conference (ANC) in Atlanta in 2017! It’s simple: Recruit five or more new members between June 1, 2015, and May 31, 2016, and you will be automatically entered into a drawing to win one of five VIP registrations to ANC 2017.* Just make sure the new member writes your name in the referral section of the membership application form, otherwise it won’t count! To learn how you can help increase SNA’s membership and enjoy VIP status at ANC 2017, visit www.schoolnutrition.org/VIP. Have you already recruited someone new to SNA? Tell us on social media using the hashtag #SNARecruiter! *This prize drawing is not available in any state or local jurisdiction where prohibited or restricted by law.
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