When It Comes To Privatization In Education, We Say Opaa!
My colleague David Stokes has a terrific paper about the privatization of public services in which he highlights many examples of public/private partnerships that benefit society. I thought of his paper when I read this story about a Kansas school district that recently announced it is privatizing its food service:
A decision made Friday morning by the USD 382 Board of Education will result in some changes in the school cafeteria next August — a greater variety of food, more made-from-scratch items, and a possible reconfiguration of space to enhance food presentation and improve efficiency.
A change more visible to the board and administrators will be a hoped-for move of the food service budget out of the red and into the black.
At a special meeting, the Board approved a contract with Opaa!, a Missouri-based company, to manage food service for the district.
The contract is projected to save the district between $30,000 and $60,000.
Opaa! is a family-owned and operated company located in Chesterfield, Mo. The company is partnering with more than 100 public school districts to provide nutritious meals.
This is another example of how private companies can provide services that public entities once provided. It also goes to show that “privatization” need not be such a scary word in education.