February 12, 2021

Menus of Change in The Oakwood Kitchen

Following our earlier share of renderings showing what the new Oakwood Kitchen will look like and a construction update showing what’s happened in the space, here’s the latest on sustainability efforts and upcoming educational opportunities…

Progress is underway for the new community space and kitchen which will be an equitable source for higher quality meals for all K-12 students. Although the kitchen will be housed on the secondary campus, we plan to begin serving the elementary campus in the fall of 2021. The addition of this facility will be a dramatic enhancement for the entire Oakwood Community.

The addition of an on-site kitchen and servery also emphasizes Oakwood’s priorities for serving better food in a more environmentally responsible way. Locally-sourced and high-quality ingredients will be used to prepare nutritious food from scratch contributing to better quality meals for students. 

There are also educational opportunities for students to learn about where their food is sourced and processed before the final meal arrives on their plates. Programming such as “Meatless Mondays” will also provide educational opportunities and create a space for conversations about reducing meat intake. An emphasis on “plant-forward” meals will also celebrate plant-based foods—including fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, soy foods, nuts, and seeds—that reflect evidence-based principles of health and sustainability.

The Oakwood Kitchen will also adopt Menus of Change—the Principles of Healthy, Sustainable Menus, developed by The Culinary Institute of America and Harvard School of Public Health. The principles focus on building menus to create a more sustainable food supply and protecting the planet’s health.

Oakwood is committed to adopting the following key initiatives:

  • Increasing students access to fresh produce by focusing on plant-based cooking
  • Using less meat in recipes, incorporating local flavors, vegetable proteins and global cuisines
  • Increasing whole grain options to more than 50%
  • Promote sustainability through menus, student-chef interaction and telling enticing stories about healthy food

Oakwood School is also committed to reducing food waste and utilizing sustainable packing. We are working towards implementing a proprietary waste reduction program and using disposable packing made entirely from renewable materials and resources to help reduce landfill contributions.

Working with our partner, Oakwood looks forward to providing solutions to lower their environmental impact and overall carbon footprint.

After over a year of planning, the Kitchen Project is scheduled to be completed in the spring of 2021. 

It will take the collective generosity of our community for this kitchen to become a reality. Please join us with a gift to this momentous project today!