- Oklahoma City Public Schools
I am #TeamOKCPS
National School Lunch Week
October 15-19 is National School Lunch Week! As Oklahoma City’s largest restaurant feeding 46,000 students twice a day, it takes the work and dedication of many School Nutrition Services staff members to ensure that all of our students are fed with healthy meals. Shonia Hall, Assistant Director of OKCPS School Nutrition Services, is one of the talented staff members who works daily to make this happen.
Shonia, who has been part of team OKCPS for three years and a half, graduated from Northeastern State University and holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology & Chemistry and is only a few credit hours away from receiving her Masters’ degree in Community Health from the University of Arkansas. A born and raised Oklahoman, Shonna is married and has two children—a 19 year old son who is a Navy Sailor, and a 7 year old daughter.
What does your typical day at work look like?
“My day starts very early! Often times I have calls and texts by 6:00am with requests for additional staff to make sure we are able to provide all the meals our students need.”
What is your favorite part of the job?
“I would say that my favorite part of the job is definitely seeing students faces when they get to eat! I also love training and teaching our staff to help them be more successful in their jobs.”
What is the most challenging part of your job and how do you overcome it?
“The most challenging part of our job is keeping our positions staffed. People get sick and sometimes life just happens, which can take people away from jobs to focus on their family and, of course, we understand these situations. I overcome this challenge by continuously trying to recruit. I often just strike up a conversation with staff at restaurants to see if they want to come work in OKCPS School Nutrition Services. You can’t beat a part time job with full time benefits & feeding kids every day at the largest restaurant in Oklahoma!”
Why is school nutrition so important?
“Healthy nutrition is crucial for students to learn and grow, we all know that students can’t focus or learn if they are hungry! We get the opportunity to fuel them every day so they are prepared to learn in the classroom and that is something very special.”
What are some of our students’ favorite meals?
“They really like mashed potatoes, chicken nuggets and rolls—that is one of their favorite meals, for sure.”
If you had to eat one meal/recipe for the rest of your life, what would you choose?
“I would eat this—none of which is the healthiest, though—fried chicken, fried potatoes, okra and squash. And, of course, I would need watermelon for dessert.”
What are some things you enjoy doing in your spare time?
“In my spare time I enjoy hanging out with my family, I like to enjoy a good cup of coffee, and just sitting in my backyard. I also craft a lot: I like to sew, make bows and jewelry.”
What would you do if you won the lottery?
“If I won the lottery, I would support my church in providing safe drinking water wells in Haiti, I would then build a new house for my mom, and start a single moms’ scholarship to help single mothers get through college. And then, I think I would buy my husband a 1958 Corvette.”