Update & FAQs on Dining Plan Change

Thank you to everyone who has responded to our Dining Survey. Because there has been some confusion over how these plans would affect all students, we are extending the deadline to provide feedback until Sunday, December 15.

Below are  responses to some of the questions that parents have submitted that will hopefully help clarify a few things.

If you have not seen previous emails about the potential dining change, you can read more information about each dining plan option online.

Why are we considering a change to our dining plans?
The current 5 day/3 day/No day plans are no longer sustainable. There are several issues at play here.  Since the 5 day/3 day/No day optional model was introduced over 15 years ago, student participation has slowly dropped from 75% to 53%. The lower participation rates have challenged the dining budgets, eventually resulting in a noticeable changes to the number of options and the quality of food.
The 5 day/3 day/No day optional model doesn’t work over time, and we are at the point where we must replace it.  Schools nationwide offer either an All-Inclusive plan or an A-la-Carte plan, which are the two plans being considered for 2020-21.

Would the All-Inclusive Dining Plan affect all FPD students or just those currently enrolled in a Dining Plan?
The All-Inclusive option would affect EVERY FPD student in 1st – 12th grade and would entail a “Dining Fee” (similar to our Technology Fee) for every student in grades 1-12.

Grade                        Anticipated Monthly Dining Fee
1-5                                $ 62.50 (equates to $4.23 per daily meal)
6-8                                $ 66.67 (equates to $4.51 per daily meal)
9-11                              $ 75 (equates to $5.08 per daily  meal)
12                                 $ 56.25 (equates to $3.81 per daily meal, if eating every day)

For those currently on an FPD Dining Plan, this would be a similar or less expensive price than the amount you are paying now. For those not currently on a plan, the price is kept as minimal as possible, to hopefully be a replacement cost for money spent on groceries for a packed lunch.

Can you opt out of the All-Inclusive Dining Plan?
No, not generally. Opting out of the All-Inclusive Dining Plan would be limited to students with extreme allergies that cannot be accommodated by the chefs;  or preschool students (3K, PreK, and Kindergarten) because they don’t visit the lunchroom and some are only enrolled for a half day.

Would Seniors be on the All-Inclusive Dining Plan since they have senior privileges and can eat off campus?
Yes, senior students would be included in the All-Inclusive plan, but with a 25% discounted rate. Our intent is to establish a special Senior Dining Area to benefit those who choose to stay on campus. Senior students would have the choice to eat lunch off campus, or enjoy the All-Inclusive lunch in an area created just for them.

Are we changing dining vendors?
That has not been determined. Vendors, including Sage and others, are being evaluated. If a change is made, Sage staff will have the option to stay with a new vendor and continue working at FPD.

Is FPD leaning toward one plan versus the other?
No. We want to gather as much parent input as possible, and parents have expressed pros and cons to each of the two options.

While the All-Inclusive plan is the best value, it requires participation from every student in grades 1-12, and a would require Dining Fee for all students in grades 1-12. At the same time, while the A-la-Carte option provides a choice, it could be more expensive for many students and would not provide the food quality, consistent monthly price, or as many food options that the All-Inclusive allows.

This is a big decision for our school, and we want to accommodate the needs and desires of as many families as possible. Thank you for responding to the survey!