Dozens of South Iredell High School students are now picking up breakfast and lunch from a food trailer parked on campus.

Iredell-Statesville Schools Nutrition Director Tina Wilson said the food trailer helps with overcrowding in the cafeteria and allows more students to have access to a nutritious meal.

“It’s a dream of mine since becoming the director. It is a need that I see for us to feed more children. It gives us the opportunity to help kids and make every avenue available to them,” she said.

At South, students have the option of eating in a patio area outside of their cafeteria because of the growing student population.

On Monday afternoon at South High, students could purchase hot chicken sandwiches, fruits and vegetables, drinks and other supplemental items from the food trailer at lunchtime. Students lined up as school nutrition employee Shannon Overcash worked the food trailer.

“I love it,” she said. “I work independently and just like being inside here.”

All students, regardless of how they pay, can punch in their student numbers just like they do inside the school cafeteria. The meals are cooked in advance inside the school kitchen and School Nutrition employees transport the items to the food trailer.

SIHS School Nutrition Director Shannon Freeland said that now students look forward to lunch because of the food trailer.

“We have 1,700 students and have overcrowding at lunch. It takes the load off in here because a lot of them won’t eat inside. It gives them the opportunity to eat out there,” Freeland said.

Child Nutrition Supervisor Graye Templeton, who was the school nutrition director at South Iredell High for many years, said the changes are helping increase participation. The food trailer is serving around 150 meals each day for breakfast and lunch.

In the morning students can step off of the bus and walk directly up to the food truck for breakfast.

Wilson said that she worked with the company Coast to Coast to help create a custom wrap design, which features items such as pizza, strawberries, tomatoes and other foods that I-SS serves.

The district’s colors, black and red, along with the motto “Serving healthy choices that last a lifetime,” are prominent in the design.

The food trailer features an entrance door, a powered awning, air conditioning, warmer, cooler, generator, stainless steel tables, cabinets and other features.

Students said that the food trailer is an awesome addition.

Food trailer, van and food truck

The food trailer was purchased as part of a three-bid purchase that includes a food truck and food van from Coast-to-Coast Mobile vending for a total of $240,000. The food van, which is parked at Statesville High School, helps provide lunches for early college students. The district is still awaiting delivery of the food truck, which is scheduled for this year.

Wilson said that the food truck will be available for all the schools to reserve for field trips and field days. It will be used in the summer as well.

“My biggest joy is knowing there are kids who have never been up to a food truck can get their meals from a food venue like this instead of a bag or a cooler on a field trip. It can be used in a lot of different ways,” Wilson explained.

The School Nutrition Department had “spend down funds,” which they were mandated to spend by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction.

The money was accrued during the pandemic when breakfast and lunch was free to all students in the district. In turn, I-SS received a higher reimbursement rate.

Wilson said that there are strict guidelines on how that money can be spent. For example, those funds can’t be used to pay off school lunch debt and can only be used within the School Nutrition Department.

Some of the other spend-down funds were used on new touch-screen computers in the cafeteria as well as kitchen utensils and tools.


2 thoughts on “South Iredell High School rolls out new food trailer

Comments are closed.