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Elementary students getting lunch in Hauser Hall

Our Dining Service

At St. Mark's, we believe strongly in providing wholesome nutritious meals and offering nutrition education programs for the our community. 

Lunch is available each full day that school is in session. Regional and theme menus featuring homemade entrées and choices of side dishes will be served with each day presenting foods that follow the guidelines of a balanced program established for our students.

Dining Frequently Asked Questions

What Offerings Are Available During Lunch?

Every day students have a choice of multiple hot or cold main dish options that include vegetarian and gluten-free options. Student can choose from the hot entrée line (served with hot vegetables and sides), the sandwich bar, the full salad bar, or soup. There will be a variety of options to supplement their meal including fresh fruit, yogurt, and a choice of milk, 100% fruit juice or a daily fruit-infused water.

What if my child has allergies or follows a certain diet?

We have several students with special dietary needs, including food allergies or sensitivities, who enjoy lunch at St. Mark's every day. We work with the child and family to prepare plates that meet their dietary needs. Chef Sergio and Nurse Beckmann partner together with the Flik regional dietitian to ensure plates are healthy for all children and appropriate for those with specific needs. Every day, we serve vegetarian, dairy, and gluten free options on the menu. In addition to the posted allergy board, all foods are labeled, and staff is available throughout lunch to answer any questions the students may have.

How do we Encourage Healthy Eating Habits?

We know that telling students about the importance of nutrition will not always translate into the selections they make during lunch. Instead, we must demonstrate that eating nutritious foods can also be fun, creative, and delicious. 

We'll have monthly tastings, which take place in the classrooms and empower students to try new foods at their own pace. They have the opportunity to sample unfamiliar foods in small bites, rate them, and let Chef Sergio know if they would like to see them on upcoming menus. In this way, they are helping build the dining program they want to see.

What if My Child is a Picky Eater?

As part of our desire to educate the whole child, we’d like to introduce our students to other tastes and help them make wise choices. If you are concerned about the offerings, feel free to pack your child some of their favorites, or speak with Chef Sergio to see if some of the items can be added to the menu.

How Does My Child Know What to do on the First Day of School?

On the first day of school, students will go through the serving area and choose their meals. Appropriate signage will be on each station, and additional teachers will be available in case questions arise.

How Often are Desserts Served?

Desserts are served every Friday. Fresh fruits are available every day.

What types of Bread are Served?

We serve white, multigrain, whole wheat, honey wheat berry, gluten free and wraps at the deli every day.

What Type of Milk is Served?

We serve whole milk, 1%, and 2% milk every day. On Tuesdays and Thursdays we serve fat free chocolate milk and regular chocolate milk.

We only serve milk sourced from cows that are certified to be free of the artificial growth hormones rBGH/rBST.

Students may also choose to drink water, milk, or fruit-infused water.

What type of Juices are Served?

Apple juice and orange juice are available daily. All juices are 100% fruit juice. Students may also choose to drink water, milk, or fruit-infused water.

Do you serve organic produce?

We serve a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables available every day, with local and organic options available when reasonable.

How often do the menus change?

Menus are planned in one-month increments. We only repeat items that are very popular with our students. View the menu online!

In addition, we have a Menu Review Committee, made up of faculty members across the grade levels. They will share student feedback and help influence menu decisions based on their knowledge of their students. Questions about who is on the committee or their work? Contact Eve Grubb, Director of Operations.

Can I join my child for lunch?

Parents are welcome to join their children occasionally at lunch at a cost of $10/day. The parent must sign in at the Front Office and pick up a visitor’s badge or wear their provided identification badge. There is a sign up sheet in the cafeteria where you can leave your name when you dine with your child. Your student account will be charged $10 for each meal you share with your child.

Can My Child Bring Lunch from Home?

Although all Pre-K through 8th grade students are required to participate in the our dining program, students may bring lunch from home if they prefer to do so. No discounts or refunds for dining services are available. Good nutritional habits, including limited sugar intake, are strongly encouraged. We request that children not leave the campus at lunchtime. Students may not order food to be delivered to school by any restaurant or food delivery service.

Where can I find more information about what is going on this month with our dining program?

We're so glad you asked! Check out the Food for Thought archive to find more information about this month's events and programs.

Why did we choose Flik?

After establishing our Food Philosophy, we partnered with Flik Dining, because their standards align so closely with our policy.

We believe in serving:

  • Foods prepared from whole, fresh ingredients, limiting the use of processed foods and avoiding ingredients containing artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.
  • Food prepared with the limited use of fats, using olive oil and non-hydrogenated canola oil to reduce the saturated fat content in items.
  • Soups made from scratch daily.
  • A variety of fresh fruits and vegetables available every day with local and organic options available.
  • A salad bar with fresh items prepared on site, including house-made dressings.
  • Whole grains available on the salad bar daily.
  • A deli that offers a variety of proteins including turkey roasted in-house.
  • Whole grain breads available at the deli every day.
  • Turkey and chicken produced with the restricted use of antibiotics.
  • Only cage-free eggs to prepare foods.
  • Milk sourced from cows that are certified to be free of the artificial growth hormones rBGH/rBST.
  • Substitutions and accommodations for individuals with dietary restrictions when necessary.

What if I have Health Concerns for my Child?

If you feel that having your child eat on the dining plan is detrimental to his/her health, please have your child’s pediatrician send a letter to Eve Grubb outlining his/her special needs. If we don’t feel confident that we can meet those needs, we will opt out of dining services for your child.

Who do I contact if I have questions?

Questions about our dining program? Contact Director of Operations, Eve Grubb.

Dining at St. Mark's

    Our Food Philosophy

    Educating the whole child at St. Mark’s includes preparing our students for learning and establishing healthy habits. A healthy lifestyle combines exercise, rest and recreation, and a balanced diet to keep the mind and body strong and capable of achieving the goals each student has for today and tomorrow.

    At St. Mark’s, we recognize that eating habits, healthy or otherwise, are established in childhood; therefore, learning about nutrition is an important part of the curriculum for a child. Growing a child’s interest in food selections is a marathon, not a sprint, and we partner with our parents to nurture these habits in our students. We believe food that enhances learning contains an appropriate balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fat, limits sodium and processed sugars, contains fruit and vegetables, and moderates portion size relative to the person consuming the food.

    Meet Our School Chef

    Sergio Diaz

    Sergio Diaz

    School Chef