Going The Extra Mile During the School Lunchtime Service

Twice every term, Dolce offers our partner primary schools something a little bit different to the regular school lunchtime service. Our theme days provide the opportunity to shake things up mid-term and we know they’re very popular with students across the UK.

During these theme days we run Best Dressed Hatch contests to encourage our kitchen teams to think outside the box and really strive to provide an extra special ‘experience of a lunchtime’. We’ve seen hundreds of creative entries during these contests and are so proud of the teams going the extra mile every theme day.

The Dolce Diner First Place Winners

One team that deserves a special mention is led by a woman named Louise at St Luke’s C.E. (VC) Primary School. As the most recent first place winner of the Dolce Diner Themed Lunch, I decided to get in touch to hear just what went into such an impressive display.

St Luke's first Diner themed service hatch, homemade paintings.

Louise struck me as an incredibly kind and enthusiastic person as we spoke over the phone. Her desire to help every child feel content during the school lunchtime service was so evident in the efforts she and the team make, not just in the kitchen and not just on Dolce theme days either!

"The girls go above and beyond" quote from the area manager

Thrilled to hear that Louise was happy to give an interview I decided to ring the very same day. Of course I just happened to call as she was in a queue in the IKEA cafe, but after some well earned meatballs Louise rang me back and I was able to ask the all important question, how did the St Luke’s service hatch come to look so good for the Dolce Diner Day?

The simple answer, everything was home made!

The Dolce Diner Themed Lunch at St Luke’s

Louise explained that with some inspiration from the internet, she hand created the themed waitress figures and the 50s car bumper (pictured above). Using paint on the back of some spare wall paper.

Louise utilised her excellent artistic skills and family helped out at home to create all sorts of themed decorations. The team covered all service areas in vinyl records, roller skates, American diner decor and themed posters. And when the printer broke everyone pitched in to finish the job by hand.

The kitchen team also donated their roller skates for the day to hang up. They sourced a popcorn machine and a retro style 60s jukebox karaoke machine to play themed music for the students, whilst they enjoyed their delicious lunch.

St Luke's second Diner themed service hatch, popcorn machine and jukebox.

I believe that the pupils at St Luke’s are very lucky to have Louise and the team providing their school lunchtime service. Their Area Manager, Lorraine, proudly explained that the whole team repeatedly goes above and beyond. So I asked Louise about the other things they do.

Safe to say I had not expected the answer that followed.

The Experience of a Lunchtime

Every pupil, on their birthday, receives a cake, a card and a rendition of ‘happy birthday’ from the kitchen team. To provide this level of attention to each student is no small undertaking but the team doesn’t stop there.

At the end of every school year, the year 6 class get to enjoy a graduation meal. Complete with decorations, certificates, homemade graduation hats and a photo booth. This event marks the end of their primary school education. It allows the kitchen team to say goodbye to the children they have served for years.

Extra theme days outside of Dolce’s planned events are also commonplace at St Luke’s. Such as their upcoming Easter themed lunch; where Louise provides chocolate bouquets as prizes for the raffle.

A Special School Lunchtime Service

It was evident from our conversation that Louise has an immense amount of pride in her work. She really cares for the pupils at the school. We are proud of the hard work that our kitchen teams display across all of Dolce’s partner schools. We are always thrilled to share stories like this; when staff members display such devotion to the ‘experience of a lunchtime’.

Thank you to the team at St Lukes. I’d like to say a personal thank you to Louise for taking the time to share her story. Keep up the fantastic work!

Written by Danielle Orrillard

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