The Parker Cafeteria
About Our Program
As you know, Parker does things differently, and that includes school lunch. We work hard to make "from scratch" meals everyone will enjoy, made the way you would at home; fresh, nutritious, visually appealing and tasty. We buy quality products from reputable vendors, small companies, local stores and farms. We source products that fit into a healthy menu and a healthy planet. We buy food without preservatives, high fructose corn syrup or high sodium content. We use recycled and recyclable paper products and this year have moved to biodegradable cornstarch based flatware instead of plastic. Most of our plastic cups are corn based material.
Pricing and Payments
Starting in 2017–2018 we will have a child nutrition online payment and account maintenance system through PayForIt.net.
2017-2018 pricing will be $2.00 for breakfast and $4.00 for lunch.
- Breakfast is $2.00 and includes a choice of one item from the daily menu, a piece of fruit, and a drink.
- Lunch is $4.00 and includes a choice of the daily entree, sandwich or salad bar, all sides, a piece of fruit, and a drink.
We offer satisfying portions and the students are encouraged to take as many sides as they like.
Salad as an Entree is the same price as a regular lunch - $4.00 and includes a serving of protein (chicken, beans, cheese, tofu, etc), a roll, a piece of fruit, and dessert if we have one that day. Additional portion of protein may be purchased at $1.25.
Reduced cost / no cost meals are available. The reduced costs are $0.40 for lunch and $0.30 for breakfast. The free and reduced meal application is included in your entrance package, can be downloaded here, or picked up from the front office.
Lunch Program Registration Reminders:
All payments not made online at payforit.net should be brought to the office first thing in the morning, especially if the account balance is low enough that the child may not be able to purchase lunch or breakfast any longer.
All students will need their cards regardless if they have money on account OR cash. All payments not made online at payforit.net should be brought to the office first thing in the morning, especially if the account balance is low enough that the child may not be able to purchase lunch or breakfast any longer.
Please check balances regularly and be sure you have money on your account. Students and staff can "go negative" up to $12 as a courtesy. Low balance letters are emailed home once the balance has reached $5. Students are also informed of low balances at the registers.
Accounts should be funded promptly, as participants with a low or negative balance will not be able to purchase lunch in line, and will instead be asked to visit the kitchen to receive a "courtesy lunch" after the lunch line has been served. According to the USDA, we are legally obligated to collect any owed funds from a served reimbursable meal.
All other information/details may be read BELOW
Questions and Answers about our new Point of Sale
and Online School Nutrition Account System
What is the new Point of Sale System (POS)? Parker is implementing a Point of Sale system (POS) that will allow students to have accounts. This system will likely look and feel similar to that of the system your children had in elementary school. It integrates with Rediker, our current student information management system.
Why are ID cards going to be important? Students will be using their ID cards to pay at the register. It will be important for the students to carry their ID cards on their person on a daily basis! Staff and students all received digital images of their personal Parker ID. The image was sent to the individual's Parker email address. In addition, physical ID's were handed out in Advisory. If a student loses or forgets an ID but has a smart phone, there is no excuse for not presenting their ID in the lunch line. These digital IDs can be saved and opened on smart phones as the students are waiting in the service line. If you would like a replacement of a lost physical ID, please see Nicky Dudensing in the Principal's Office. The cost is $5. If your child needs assistance finding their digital ID, they should visit the Technology Office. The more kids with their cards ready, the smoother the transition will go.
What if my child has lost their ID card? As stated, students will now need to have their IDs on their person each day. They should see Nicky Dudensing in the Principal's office immediately for a replacement. They can also use the digital ID provided, if they have a smart phone. If they do not have a smart phone and have requested a new card from Nicky, until the new card arrives the cashier at each register will be able to look up your child’s account using their pin number or name. When the cards are swiped at the registers, the photos on the account are matched to the person making the purchase. We are trying our very best to assure that the account is only being accessed by the proper student.
How do I create my student’s nutritional account? You have been provided your child’s unique ID number. Please reach out to the Business Office if you need it again. This number will be needed to create your child’s nutritional account. Once these emails are received parents and guardians will be able to set up the nutrition accounts, put money onto their student’s nutrition accounts, setup reminders, and setup auto refill options. If you did not get an email with the ID number or if you lose the ID number please reach out to Michelle McKenna or Cathy Pearlman.
What happens to old paper tickets? We have asked that families turn in any surplus tickets that they may have. These tickets will then be converted into a deposit for their child’s nutrition account. If you have more than one student please inform the Business Office how you would like the returned tickets allocated to their accounts. Each lunch ticket has a value of $3.75 and each breakfast ticket a value of $2.00. Please note: If your child owes money to the lunch program, tickets turned in will be used to pay IOUs before they are converted to funds for their new student account.
How much are school lunches? In the 2017-2018 school year, Parker’s nutrition program costs will be lunch $4.00 and breakfast $2.00.
UPDATED: Will cash be still be accepted at the registers? We are no longer accepting cash or checks at the register. All payments not made online at payforit.net should be brought to the office first thing in the morning, especially if the account balance is low enough that the child may not be able to purchase lunch or breakfast any longer.
Can one pay for their Sibling or their Friend with their nutrition account? No. Students cannot and will not be allowed use their ID card to pay for a friend’s lunch. In addition, they are not allowed to pay for their sibling’s lunch either due to the fact the cashier cannot identify in the POS system who are siblings. If funds are needed to be transferred between sibling accounts please contact the Business Office to assist you.
Is there a transaction fee for using the service? Yes, the fee is $1.75 for ACH (bank accounts) and 4.75% for credit cards per transaction. You can still chose to send a check in to school, if you wish to avoid these fees.
How long will it take for my deposit to be reflected into the system? Payments processed before 9:00 PM ET should post to the student’s account the next morning, in most cases. Payments made the same morning will post to the student account the following day.
Can I still fund my child’s nutrition account with cash? Yes. Checks and cash will still be accepted to be deposited into your child’s nutrition account. Checks and cash should be brought to the Front Office in the morning.
Will I be notified if my child’s balance is running low? Yes. When creating your child’s account, parents and guardians are able to set up recurring deposits and set up e-mail notifications when their child’s account falls below a certain dollar amount. In addition, the Business Office will be sending notices home as well once the account gets to a low balance.
UPDATED: What if I forget to add money to my child’s nutrition account and the balance is too low to pay for a breakfast or lunch? The system will allow account to go slightly negative for just these types of situations. It is expected that the account be funded as soon as possible. Parker will no longer be allowing negative balances that have been in the range of $50-100 to the program as it violates best practice. Please be aware that if the balance on your child’s account becomes excessively low (below $12), you will get an immediate phone call from the school. We do not want to embarrass the children, but we NEED accounts funded in a timely manner. As always, please reach out to the Business Office or Parker’s website for the Free and Reduced lunch application at any point during the school year.
What if my child or children currently qualify for Free and Reduced Lunch and Breakfast? Their free and reduced lunch status is automatically built into the system. When your child is at the register, they will still need to present their Student IDs. In an effort to maintain confidentiality, no one, not even the child, will be aware that a purchase is part of the free and reduced program other than the cashier handling the transaction. Also please be very aware that the Free and Reduced lunch program also only covers one full lunch and one full breakfast per day. If your child on free or reduced lunch wishes for more than what comprises the meal, they will be required to pay full price for the additional items.
What if my child withdraws or graduates from Parker and has a balance on their nutrition account? All balances will be refunded, OR, parents or guardians may choose to transfer the balance to an enrolled sibling’s nutrition account, or to donate the balance back to the school.
Public Release Statement
Francis Parker Charter Essential School announced its policy for free and reduced price lunch and breakfast for those students unable to pay the full price for meals and snacks under the National School Lunch & Breakfast Program. Please click here for a full version of our public release statement.
Please feel free to contact the Cafeteria with any questions. 978-772-3293 x 146