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Student-Run Culinary Café Opens to the Public for 2006–07

8th Annual Grand Re-Opening Attracts Crowds of Hungry Customers

Student holding menu

Students from Leo A. Palmiter Junior-Senior High School and Elinor Lincoln Hickey Junior-Senior High School, poised with pads and pens, took lunch orders from new and returning customers of their Culinary Café on October 26.

The acclaimed Café, re-opening for the 2006-07 school year, served dozens of diners during the opening afternoon. Students taking part in the Culinary Arts Program learn to prepare meals, serve customers, maintain a clean kitchen, and operate a business. They are young people with special needs who have experienced difficulty managing in a conventional school environment.

One of the main goals behind the program is to teach students important skills designed to help them find employment some day.

"Our students find real success and self-confidence through our Culinary Arts program, and they take great pride in their achievements," County Superintendent David W. Gordon said. "They are learning very valuable skills that will help make them employable and that's a great accomplishment."

The Culinary Café is a classroom-based instructional program that allows students hands-on opportunities to reinforce their newly acquired skills in food preparation, storage and handling, teamwork, and customer service. The Café is a project of the Sacramento County Office of Education, operated through its Special Education Department and Regional Occupational Program. In addition to their regular academic studies, students attend classes in the school's home economics lab to gain mastery of entry-level skills in the foodservice profession. Many students have subsequently attained jobs or have used their vocational and social skills to help them further their education.

The Café is open to the public Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12 noon to 1 p.m. Weekly lunch offerings — just $6 — include a main course, vegetable, salad, beverage, and dessert. Gratuities for student servers are always appreciated. All proceeds return to the program. Reservations (required) may be made by phoning the Café at (916) 566-2039 and menus are posted on the Culinary Café website.

The Culinary Café is located on the campus of Leo A. Palmiter Jr./Sr. High School:
2040 Ethan Way, near Cottage Way and Howe Avenue.

Student server with tray
Culinary teacher with student