AMHERST, N.Y. (WKBW) — With so many kids dependent on school for nutritious meals, it's crucial for cafeterias to be fully staffed. Local schools need to fill those jobs before school begins and are hiring now.
“We’re looking to complete the roster, and to make sure that we’re best suited to serve our students in the district, not only for an educational standpoint, but for their health and well-being as well," said Mike Ginestre, new Superintendent of Schools at the Sweet Home Central School District.
Over 2 million New Yorkers are struggling with hunger and almost 700,000 of them are children, according to Feeding America. More than 219,000 WNYers are at risk of hunger.
Bringing the whole school back on September 8 will take all hands on deck.
"To bring everybody back 5 days a week, there’s definitely been a shortage in the services area. We’re constantly looking for people, we’re looking to fill those roles," said Ginestre.
From bus drivers to custodians to food services.
"Although we were feeding students that were at home, with everybody back it’s more on the plate of our food service people, no pun intended," said Ginestre.
Ginestre says everything comes back to keeping students safe and that includes lunchtime.
"We want to move students through food service quickly, efficiently and safely and so having a full staff there is critical to the operation as well," said Ginestre.
Across their services department, they’re looking to hire 20 people.
"They start at about $13/hour and they range up to $20 based on experience and skill set that you bring to the position," said Ginestre.
And in Niagara Falls, Superintendent Mark Laurrie says they’re switching things up—asking bus drivers if they’ll double as food service workers during that empty part of their shifts because of a shortage there as well.
For those jobs, check out the job fair at Abate Elementary from 1-3pm on August 18. For service jobs at Sweet Home, click here.