Satire account rates Highlands lunches, cafeteria staff works diligently despite COVID-19

     Highlands High School students are following a new Instagram account, @highlandsqualitylunch. The account is a grid of posts consisting of a picture of the meal and a second picture the Highlands Bluebird holding a rating of the meal. The caption describes the meal, the utensils, the drink, and gives a rating of the lunch with reasoning. 

     When scrolling through the account, one post pictures a real photo of a meal followed by a crowned Bluebird holding a 5/5 rating, fireworks in the background. The caption says, “Today’s lunch: Gordon Ramsay’s Exquisite Crispito, Chips from God himself, An apple straight from the orchard, and the purest water that only cost $1, and of course solid steel Plastic Fork and Knife! 5/5.”

     Scrolling to the next post reveals a 0/5 rating being thrown in the garbage. 



     @highlandsqualitylunches started as a satire account but has changed over time.

     The account said, “It started as a joke, just something to do. As time has gone on it really has become something a bit more serious. Our hopes were to share the common misconception that lunches are getting better when in reality they have not improved in the past years.”

      This year has made providing quality lunch difficult for the cafeteria staff. It is a struggle for them to even get shipped gloves.

     Lunch Manager Nancy Gesenhues detailed the struggles that they have faced this year, saying, “We order stuff like hamburgers, but we don’t have the supply to get it together so we go to plan B which may not be as good as the first plan. That’s what is hard — we don’t really know what we are going to get so that makes it hard on us.”

     @highlandsqualitylunch understands that COVID-19 has played a big role in why the lunches aren’t as great as they were last year.

     They said, “I feel like COVID-19 definitely decreased the quality of the lunch, but in the past years at the Middle School and High School the food was on the decline.” 

    Many students echo this thought. This year, many promised meals haven’t been fulfilled, rather replaced with something else like breadsticks or chicken nuggets. 

     Freshman Davis Hinegardner said, “I think the lunch is okay. I was expecting more because I heard from my sister that lunch is really good.”

     However, students also recognize that Highlands lunches are favorable compared to those at other schools. 

     Senior Olivia Bravard said, “Where my cousins go [to school], all they get is frozen food. Most of the time they can’t even eat half of their lunch. At least [at Highlands] we have hot food that is edible.”

     Despite the ratings they give, the creators of @highlandsqualitylunch appreciate what the cafeteria staff is doing for students.

     @highlandsqualitylunch said, “I’m super appreciative that they are at the school and trying their best to feed us. You know, you’ve seen other schools and their meals are not up to Highlands lunch standard and we take that for granted. The students truly do appreciate them and our account shouldn’t be taken too seriously.”