Culinary student run popup “Breakfast Club” hits legal obstacle
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At the beginning of the 2016-17 school year, the Lawrence College and Career Center‘s Advanced Culinary class decided to form a breakfast pop up stand called the Breakfast Club. Every Wednesday morning, the pop up would be in a different location: Free State High School, Lawrence High School, the Lawrence College and Career Center or the district office. These students would sell breakfast tacos to raise money for premium ingredients they could use in class.
“We get $800 a semester which is not [enough] when every week you’re spending $50 on food,” senior and Advanced Culinary student Seamus Herrod said. “The whole point of having an Advanced Culinary class is to be able to work with higher quality ingredients, higher end recipes and develop the skills that we’re going to need when we go on to culinary school or directly into restaurants.”
Advanced Culinary students concocted a menu and worked with the Applied Business and Marketing class to get help with advertising.
“Basically we just came up with a marketing plan, we did market research and we did advertising for [the culinary students],” senior and Applied Business and Marketing student Gavin Jeffrey said. “[The project] provides some great experience and, if that’s what they want to do, it helps [the culinary students] push forward in their career choice.”
When the culinary students met with the head of Food Services to discuss the project, they reached an obstacle.
“The only problem that [the head of Food Services] had at the time was that it might conflict with the current non-compete laws,” Herrod said. “Because our school receives federal funding for the food department, they aren’t allowed to have any sort of business presence.”
To combat these laws, the Law and Government class got involved and found that they do not mention student-led organizations. On Oct. 10, Lawrence College & Career Center students released a press statement to announce their combined efforts to change the policy.
According to Herrod, the school board and members of Food Services fully supported the Breakfast Club, but the head of Food Services did not.
“Food Services felt threatened or they felt like we were disrespecting them in some way by wanting to do this when what we were really trying to do was raise money for our class,” Herrod said.
The head of Food Services did not respond to questions about the Breakfast Club pop up.
Law and Government students are still working to change the competition policy, but the Advanced Culinary class has decided to continue the Breakfast Club at the College and Career Center and the district office.