Edison Leaves Students Hungry for More

In the ever-evolving landscape of our high school, the changes in the cafeteria have become a spicy topic among the students. With renovations of the commodity being completed just last year to streamline lunch services and make them more efficient, one might expect an atmosphere of culinary delight it seems, however,  the taste of transformation hasn’t quite sparked the palate of our student body. 

Numerous complaints can be heard walking in the crowded halls of Edison. Students, ranging from freshmen who are only familiar with the cafeteria in its current state to seniors who have witnessed the renovations, share a common sentiment that the cafeteria does not meet their expectations, especially in the food made in the cafeteria. This aligns with the massive C our high school received on the Niche.com high school grading system in the Food section. These complaints range from the quality and appearance to even the temperature of the food.

Caption: The change in the Edison Cafeteria from 2016 to 2024.

“It seems low quality and doesn’t seem appetizing” said, Jasmeet Kaur, a freshman year student. Kaur also went on to rate the food a low four out of ten. “I would say I’ve received cold food four out of five times.” Over the months spent in school and after consuming numerous meals, the adolescent has noticed that four out of five hot meals were consistently served cold.

“We get the same kinds of food every day such as pizza and the bean wrap” said, Fatima Zahra, repetitiveness has made the food in the cafeteria boring. 

A major factor that plays into the school foods’ “low quality” seems to be temperature. Seven out of the twelve Edison students interviewed regarded the topic of school lunches as they believed the school lunch was cold. Presenting a necessity for change in the layout of the cafeteria to be more effective in keeping food meant to be warm, warm. 

“I would eat the food, but not by choice instead because of hunger,” said Christian Chacon, a school aid who supervises the cafeteria. Chacon goes on to explain, “I specifically hate the temperature. The food is too cold. When it’s put in the station it’s hot. The steam makes the food moist and cold.” 

This sentiment of low-quality food is shared across the board. Seniors who have had the school lunch for three years now share very similar sentiments. 

“It is very repetitive and often the same thing served multiple times a week so it gets unappealing to eat with the lack of variety,” said Rezzea Alam, a senior year student. 

The school’s lack of effort in the food served is further emphasized by the school’s website. In the Food Menu section of the website, the food menu is not updated. A student who would like to have knowledge about what they will be eating the next day cannot have it. Unless they assume the same food items will be served, which is a very accurate assumption. 

Food plays a vital part in the success of teenagers. Playing a pivotal role in their physical and mental development. It is crucial for thriving academically. Which is why schools need to make the cafeteria and lunches effective. According to Global Citizen, over 30 million students across America rely on school meals. 

These numbers reflect the necessity of the proper maintenance of school lunches, not just in Edison. As teenagers navigate their busy day, a balanced and nourishing diet becomes paramount, which impacts their ability to concentrate in class, engage in extracurricular activities, and cultivate a foundation for lifelong health. Thus, school lunch programs stand at the intersection of nourishment and education. Teens need good food and a good environment to consume this food.

Works Cited

InsideSchools. “Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Education High School – District 28 – InsideSchools.” Insideschools.org, 2016, insideschools.org/school/28Q620. Accessed 4 Jan. 2024.

Niche. “Thomas A. Edison Career & Technical Education High School in Queens, NY.” Niche, 2023, www.niche.com/k12/thomas-a-edison-career-and-technical-education-high-school-jamaica-ny/. Accessed 22 Dec. 2023.

Rodriguez, Leah. “Children Who Rely on School Meals Are Going Hungry in the US.” Global Citizen, 8 Sept. 2020, www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/school-meals-covid-19-hunger/.

Tanisha Basra

Hello my lovelies, my name is Tanisha Basra. I am a senior at Thomas A. Edison CTE High School. I am a foodie, a video game fanatic, and an avid movie watcher. I am one of the fantastic members of the Opinion section in the Edison Light. As a person with strong, passionate, and concise opinions this section will bring out my analytical and possibly creative mindset. My hobbies range anywhere from total laziness to total productivity. Thus, my knowledge is as broad and as wide as my opinions on what I know. I hope you all enjoy the diversity and the reflection of mindsets I hope to bring to the Edison Light.