Some Kansas City area school cafeterias don't make the grade whe - KCTV5 News

Some Kansas City area school cafeterias don't make the grade when it comes to food safety

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Thousands of kids will sit down this week for breakfast or lunch in their school cafeteria.   And just like restaurants, school cafeterias get inspected and have to follow a health code. (KCTV5) Thousands of kids will sit down this week for breakfast or lunch in their school cafeteria.  And just like restaurants, school cafeterias get inspected and have to follow a health code. (KCTV5)

Thousands of kids will sit down this week for breakfast or lunch in their school cafeteria. 

And just like restaurants, school cafeterias get inspected and have to follow a health code. KCTV5 News wanted to find out just how clean they are.

KCTV5 poured through hundreds of school cafeteria inspection reports from districts on both sides of the state line across the metro. The inspection reports are from the last school year through August 2017.

There were many schools in complete compliance of the health code, but there were some in just about every district that weren’t so perfect.

KCTV5 was able to collect inspection reports from Blue Valley, Grandview, Independence, Kansas City, KS, Lee’s Summit, Park Hill, Liberty, North Kansas City, Olathe and Shawnee Mission school districts.

How often your child’s cafeteria is inspected depends on where it’s located. For example, schools inspected by the Jackson County Environmental Health will see inspectors about twice each year. 

If the school is monitored by Kansas City, MO, they’ll visit elementary and middle schools about four times each year. High schools get visits about three times each year. 

If there are violations, schools will see inspectors a bit more often. 

Inspections are not announced, always a surprise, keeping everyone on their toes. 

  • Mouse droppings were found in multiple school districts, including KCK, where six schools had mouse/rodent droppings during inspections. Several of those schools were cited for that violation multiple times. 
  • Mouse/rodent droppings were also found Shawnee Mission, Olathe, Grandview and Kansas City, MO schools.  
  • Dead rodents were found in others, including schools in Lee’s Summit and KCK. 
  • Other schools had problems with roaches, including schools in KCK, Shawnee Mission and Independence. 
  • Pink mold/slime was detected in other schools in both the Shawnee Mission and Olathe school districts. 
  • Several districts have schools with five or more violations during a single inspection.

KCTV5 continues to collect data for several school districts and will update the following information for districts. 

Check the following links to look up your child's school cafeteria report card:

KCTV5 invited all school districts in our report for a response. KCTV5 will update this information as we receive additional statements.

Kansas City, Kansas: 

The Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools considers the safety and well-being of students and staff to be our highest priority. When we learn about anything that does not meet our expectations for excellence, we follow up immediately, and work to remedy the deficiency as quickly as possible.

Lee's Summit: 

Food safety and sanitation is a top priority at all schools. Cafeteria staff members participate in required food handlers courses throughout the year and have earned their county food-handlers card. In addition, our Nutrition Services staff members have the opportunity to take a more in-depth course, known as Serv Safe or Serving it Safe, and earn certification through the School Nutrition Association. School cafeterias are required to have two health inspections annually while restaurants are required to have one. So far this fall, 10 of our 24 sites have been inspected with no violations reported and no follow-up inspection needed. All safety inspections reports are posted in our school cafeterias and available for the public to review.

Blue Valley:

Providing a healthy and safe cafeteria environment is a top priority in Blue Valley. Our Food & Nutrition Services’ staff is committed to ensuring all standards and regulations are met, and any concerns are resolved immediately.


All inspection results are reviewed by the Nutritional Services Director. The results of the inspections are then shared with the Unit Leads and are used as a focus for weekly safety team meeting reviews.  If maintenance corrections are needed, work orders are generated for corrective action on a high priority status. 

The teams follow a formalized schedule of safety topics monthly. Additionally, all team members are required to have a food safety training certificate and all Unit Leads and Directors are required to renew their 5 year Serve Safe certification every three years. Also, a 3rd party Safety Audit is conducted annually.

Park Hill:

As part of our overall district commitment to safety, we are extremely serious about food safety. We constantly monitor this, and we regularly train our staff. If the inspector ever finds an issue, we respond immediately, and we try to have the issue fixed while she is still here.


The cleanliness of our cafeterias is vital to the health and safety of our students. Our Food Services Division works diligently to make sure our cafeterias meet and exceed all standards and regulations and immediately remedy any issues that arise.

Shawnee Mission:

The Shawnee Mission School District has systems in place every day to monitor and ensure food safety. The health and well-being of our students is our top priority regarding food safety for our students and staff each day.

Reported violations

Kansas City, KS

Mouse droppings:

  • Lindberg Elementary (2/9/17)
  • Lindberg Elementary (11/1/16)
  • W A White Elementary (2/5/17)
  • W A White Elementary (2/27/17)
  • Northwest Jr. High.  (1/26/17)
  • Northwest Jr. High (2/14/17)
  • West Middle School (2/15/17)
  • West Middle School (2/27/17)
  • West Middle School  (5/25/17)
  • Rosedale Middle School
  • Argentine Middle School 
  • Welbern Elementary 


  • Stoney Point North Elementary 
  • Quindaro Elementary (dead roach)
  • Argentine Middle School 

Raw sewage backup:

  • Quindaro Elementary (3/7/17)

Five + violations during single inspection:

  • Argentine Middle School (7)
  • Rosedale Middle School (7)
  • Stoney Point North Elementary (6) 
  • Stoney Point South Elementary (5)
  • White Church Elementary (6)


Mouse droppings:

  • Conn West Elementary 

Five + violations during single inspection:

  • Conn West Elementary (6)

Lees Summit

Dead rodent:

  • Pleasant Lea Middle School

North Kansas City

Five + violations during single inspection:

  • Davidson Elementary (5) 
  • Chouteau Elementary (9)
  • Winnwood Elementary (5) 


Five + violations during single inspection:

  • Liberty High School (7)  on 9/6/16
  • Liberty High School (5) on 2/27/17
  • Discovery Middle School (6)
  • Ridgeview Elementary (5)

Black debris/mold:

  • South Valley Middle School
  • Lillian Schuamacher Elementary 
  • Epic Elementary 
  • Franklin Elementary 

Pink slime:

  • Liberty North High School

Blue Valley

No rodent droppings/rodents/cockroaches/mold

Park Hill

Black substance build-up in ice machine:

  • Congress Middle School

Pink residue build-up in ice machine:

  • Plaza Middle School

Dead insects:

  • Prairie Point Elementary 


Mouse droppings:

  • Ott Elementary 


  • Sycamore Hills Elementary 


Mouse droppings:

  • West View Elementary 


  • Olathe Northwest High School 
  • Harmony Early Childhood Center

Five + violations during single inspection:

  • Manchester Park Elementary (5)

Kansas City, MO

Mouse droppings:

  • Stuart Symington Elementary 
  • Wheatley Elementary 

Five + violations during single inspection:

  • Stuart Syminton School (8)
  • WInnwood School (5)
  • Faxon Elementary (5)

Raw food handling:

  • Carver Elementary 

Related links

FDA health code

CDC importance of food safety at school

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