Washougal schools kitchen gets makeover grant
Hathaway Elementary in Washougal is one of 39 schools throughout the state to receive U.S. Department of Agriculture grant funding for new kitchen equipment this fall. Hathaway, the only school in Clark County to take home one of the grants this year, received $10,816, which will go toward purchasing two new double-door freezers. In all, the agency doled out $590,372, and the money was targeted at helping schools with the highest number of students signed up for free or reduced price meals.The freezers are a welcome addition, as aging equipment all over the Washougal School District has begun to fall apart at about the same time, said Mark Jasper, the district’s food services manager. When temperatures began heating up last spring, Hathaway lost some food after two old freezers broke down, and repairs were no longer cost-effective.“The equipment we’re repairing, it’s over 12 years old, and it’s failing,” Jasper said. “This was great timing, and we’re lucky to be chosen.”Program in the redJasper was especially appreciative because there’s little money to go around in food services. The program operates at a loss every year, sitting about $80,000 in the red in the 2012-2013 school year, he said.