Cafeteria Cook

Full Time
Washington, DC 20002
Posted Today
Job description

The Government of the District of Columbia values the safety of our employees, our residents, and our visitors. In support of these values, if you are selected for this job you must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, which includes all eligible booster shots unless you have been approved for a medical and/or religious exemption by the Government of the District of Columbia. If you join our team, you must commit to submitting proof that you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by uploading a copy of your vaccination card or an approved medical or religious exemption when requested. If you are granted an exemption, you must submit to weekly COVID-19 testing and will be required to upload weekly a negative COVID-19 test to maintain employment with the Government of the District of Columbia. Failure to provide evidence of vaccination or an approved medical or religious exemption will result in disciplinary action.

Position Overview

The Office of Innovation and Systems Improvement (ISI) works with the Chancellor to align resources across the organization through innovation and continuous improvement. Our goal is to initiate change and lead DC Public Schools into the highest performing school district in the nation. After engaging with over 3,000 internal and external stakeholders to help shape the future of DCPS, we are guided by the five strategic priorities of the new Capital Commitment 2017-2022 Strategic Plan:

  • Promote Equity: Define, understand, and promote equity to close achievement gaps and interrupt institutional bias.
  • Empower Our People: Recruit, develop, and retain a talented, caring, and diverse team.
  • Educate the Whole Child: Provide rigorous, joyful, and inclusive academic and social emotional experiences for all students.
  • Ensure Excellent Schools: Increase the number of high quality schools across the district by defining blended autonomies for schools and creating opportunities for innovation.
  • Engage Families: Deepen partnerships with families and community.

The Office of the Chief Operating Officer (OCOO) is comprised of the Strategic School Operations, Food & Nutrition Services, School Security, Facilities, Compliance, and Attendance teams. OCOO is responsible for guiding the operations and functions for all 118 schools within the District. Our goal is for all DCPS schools to be ready on the first day of school and every day thereafter so that all principals can lead, all teachers can teach, and all students can learn.

The DCPS Department of Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) is recognized for its healthy and innovative school food. The scope of the DCPS FNS’ operations extends beyond school meals to include nutrition-related activities such as school gardens and farm-to-school as well as environmental sustainability and stewardship initiatives for cafeteria operations.

The mission of the DCPS FNS is: All DC Public Schools students are engaged and have access to wholesome and delicious meals that promote long-term wellness, preparation for learning, and satisfaction with their school.

The Cafeteria Cook prepares, produces, heats, cooks, bakes, and serves a variety of foods from fresh, canned, dry, or frozen states according to recipes and assists in other related tasks in a designated food service production and/or service area. The Cafeteria Cook is second to the Cafeteria Lead and is responsible for contributing to the efficient, effective, compliant, and positive culture in the building and among the staff. The Cafeteria Cook is responsible for the overall quality of food at the assigned school; meeting the mandated nutritional needs of students; ensuring that all processes are met in utilizing standardized recipes; executing and supervising the cooking of meals to comply with USDA nutrition standards; leading the efforts of all storage rooms and refrigerators/freezers being maintained according to FNS standards; and complying with mandated health requirements.

This position is a safety-sensitive position. As a result, throughout employment this position will be subject to the Employee Mandatory Drug and Alcohol Testing Policy.

The Cafeteria Cook will receive a school-specific assignment, where they are expected to report unless otherwise scheduled. The Cafeteria Cook may be required to rotate between schools within the same Cluster due to changing scheduling and staffing needs. Cafeteria Cooks will be notified of their rotation schedule in writing by their supervisor prior to their schedule going into effect.

This position is a safety-sensitive position. As a result, throughout employment this position will be subject to the Employee Mandatory Drug and Alcohol Testing Policy.

The Cafeteria Cook will report to the Cafeteria Lead.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

The below statements are intended to describe the general nature and scope of work being performed by this position. This is not a complete listing of all responsibilities, duties, and/or skills required. Other duties may be assigned.

  • Prepares, produces, heats, cooks, bakes, and serves a variety of foods, including entrees, meats, vegetables, desserts, breads, salads, sandwiches, beverages, or other foods and beverages, as specified by the menus, recipes, and production records.

  • Sets up and merchandises food and food service areas and serves food.

  • Estimates food preparation amounts and adjusts recipes, if required, for the purpose of meeting projected meal requirements and minimizing waste.

  • Cooks food items identified in pre-planned menus and a la carte menu items for the purpose of meeting mandated nutritional requirements and/or projected meal requirements.

  • Cleans utensils, equipment, and the storage, food preparation, and serving areas for the purpose of maintaining sanitary conditions.

  • Operates kitchen equipment such as, but not limited to, electric mixers, slicers, grinders, ovens, stove tops, tilt-skillets, tilt kettles, warmers, and coolers; and utilizes kitchenware such as, but not limited to, knives, spatulas, whisks, tongs, spoons, and ladles.

  • Monitors cafeteria workers and kitchen areas for the purpose of ensuring a safe and sanitary working environment in the absence of or delegation by the appropriate leadership.

  • Assists in completing food and supply inventories; assists in preparing sales, production, and other reports; and attends training programs (classroom and virtual) as designated.

  • Oversees the preparation, cooking, and serving of food and beverage items for the purpose of meeting mandated nutritional and health requirements.

  • Prepares production records, inventory reports, substitution reports, etc. for the purpose of complying with District and federal food service requirements.

  • Assists in the monitoring, reduction, and management of food waste.

  • Receives food items and/or supplies for the purpose of verifying quantity, quality, and specifications of orders and/or complying with mandated health requirements.

  • Reports equipment malfunctions for the purpose of maintaining equipment in safe working order.

  • Responds to inquiries of students, staff, and the public for the purpose of providing information and/or direction regarding the type and/or cost of meals.

  • Assists other personnel for the purpose of supporting them in the completion of their work activities.


  • High school diploma or GED.
  • At least one to three years of related work experience.
  • Previous exposure to or experience in the education sector a plus.
  • Computer literacy (email, attachments, printing, etc.)
  • Ability to follow written instructions.
  • Ability to follow oral instructions.
  • Ability to lift up to 35 pounds, stand, and walk for up to eight hours.
  • Good working knowledge of food preparation.
  • Familiarity of kitchen equipment.
  • Can read and follow a recipe unsupervised.
  • Sanitation certification (ServSafe or equivalent) and status must remain current throughout employment.
  • DC Department of Health certified, and status must remain current throughout employment.

DCPS Values

  • STUDENTS FIRST: We recognize students as whole children and put their needs first in everything we do.
  • COURAGE: We have the audacity to learn from our successes and failures, to try new things, and to lead the nation as a proof point of PK-12 success.
  • EQUITY: We work proactively to eliminate opportunity gaps by interrupting institutional bias and investing in effective strategies to ensure every student succeeds.
  • EXCELLENCE: We work with integrity and hold ourselves accountable for exemplary outcomes, service, and interactions.
  • TEAMWORK: We recognize that our greatest asset is our collective vision and ability to work collaboratively and authentically.
  • JOY: We enjoy our collective work and will enthusiastically celebrate our success and each other.

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