BRENTWOOD, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Parents in a Long Island school district are upset about what their kids are getting served for lunch, and they may not be alone.
Schools around the country are facing problems with school lunches thanks to supply chain and labor shortages caused by the pandemic.READ MORE: Overnight Gun Violence: 3 Men Shot In Queens, Innocent Woman Shot In Brooklyn, NYPD Says
An egg sandwich with a side of one fry was posted online with the caption, “So this is my high school lunch today.” Another photo sent with a text read, “This is our breakfast.”
Parents on the receiving end of pictures like these aren’t satisfied.
One mother, who wanted to remain anonymous, shared her concerns with CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis.
“Brentwood, do better,” she said. “That’s not a lunch. These kids go to school from 7 a.m. sometimes ’til 2, 3 o’clock in the afternoon. If this is all they’re getting to eat, how are they supposed to be productive?”
As another parent points out, many kids rely on school meals.
“We are fortunate enough to be able to send our kids to school with a lunch from home, but there’s a lot of people in this community that can’t do that, and their kids are either forced to either eat the food or wait ’til they get home,” Jon Bruzzi said.
Brentwood Superintendent Richard Loeschner says the district is having trouble getting certain foods and items thanks to a supply chain problem created by the pandemic.READ MORE: Suffolk Police: Ganessa Gordon, 18, Reported Missing In Brentwood
“We’re having some difficulty getting some meats in. Orders get canceled literally the night before. Sometimes we’re expecting a larger shipment and their truck pulls up and there’s only one box,” he said.
He outlined those issues in a letter to the community regarding the free meals, explaining they meet nutrition guidelines set by the USDA to feed the 19,000 students the district serves.
Loeschner added, “I’m extremely proud of our food service workers. We have 19 kitchens and last year during the pandemic, we served about 60-90,000 meals a week to the Brentwood, Central Islip, Bayshore communities.”
“I think they’re just passing the buck,” the anonymous parent said. “This has been an ongoing issue.”
Parents shared pictures of expired food and tough toast served to students in years past.
“My concerns are that all of this is being ignored. Parents are constantly complaining,” Bruzzi said.
The superintendent says he meets with parents and listens to student input and the district is working on improving its special grab-and-go program some high school students are enrolled in.
“Unfortunately, there are some mistakes along the way, but nothing that we don’t address, nothing that we don’t take seriously and nothing that we won’t solve in the very near future,” Loeschner said.
“I hope that they fix the menu, I hope they give our children the proper nutritious food they deserve,” the anonymous parent said.MORE NEWS: 'Best Small Cities In America': New Jersey Communities Make Top 25
These parents will believe it when they see it on their kids’ plates.