School board and food service

Finalizing which topic or topics I include in my monthly piece (that the Marshall Independent is kind enough to let me write and submit) is not always easy. There is always a lot of things taking place and going on, yet I try to share information that I hope is relevant and that people can relate to or want to know about. This month, I’d like to share an update on the Marshall Public Schools’ Board of Education and on our food service program.

During the November school board elections, Jeff Chapman was re-elected to the school board, and Sara Runchey and Aaron Ziemer were elected. Jeff, Sara, and Aaron recited an oath of office at the reorganizational meeting in early January and “began” their four-year terms on the Marshall Public Schools’ Board of Education. In addition to Jeff, Sara, and Aaron, Bill Swope, Bill Mulso, and Matt Coleman also serve on the board, along with Aniso Mohamed and Ammran Mohamed who are student school board members. I look forward to spending time with Sara, Aaron, and all members of the board doing important work on behalf of our students, families, staff and community.

Each year, the school board selects a goal or focus area that they will concentrate on and then plan and do a variety of tasks, actions, and activities to help accomplish. The MPS School Board selects an annual goal or focus area because they understand the importance of striving for continuous improvement individually and collectively and leading by example. The goal for this school year is “advocacy,” so the board will advocate for, seek out, encourage, and support efforts in the areas of:

• Continuous Improvement: adequate resources to improve facilities, programming, and technology.

• Environment: a safe environment for students and staff.

• Funding: adequate, stable, and equitable funding.

• Marketing: promoting the strengths of and growth in the Marshall Community and school district.

• Retention: all available resources to attract, educate, and retain students and staff.

• Student Achievement: high standards and expectations relative to student achievement.

Our district has partnered with Taher, Inc. for 32 years to provide our food service in all district sites. At a recent meeting, Taher Vice President of Operations Mark Broderson shared some interesting information. An emphasis for Taher this year is communications, so they are increasing their presence on social media and providing a variety of informative and helpful documents such as the “Harvest of the Month” and “Healthy to a ‘T’ Newsletters,” along with monthly menus for each school/site. These can be found on the district webpage (, under departments, food service, and monthly menu.

While we will continue to work on looking to improve the variety of options offered to our students, I was pleased that summer breakfasts and lunches served has increased by 17 percent since last year through our summer meal program. Additionally, the number of breakfasts served during the school year has increased by nearly 60 percent in two years! The importance of students having a healthy and nutritious meal to help kick start their learning and focus for the day cannot be overstated. MPS students have the opportunity to consume healthy, nutritious, and reasonably-priced meals at all our sites because of our great partnership with Taher.

For more information about something or if you have questions, I’d encourage you to reach out to the District Office at (507) 537-6924. You can also contact me at Thank you for taking time to read this and for the support shown for the Marshall Public School District. Go Tigers!