A Custodian Keeps His School Cooking

June 08, 2009

By Mark Bishop, Deputy Director

I've written before about the convergence of our primary issues of wellness and
environmental health: research showing environmental contributors to obesity;
facility and construction issues driving both environmental health and wellness
benefits; or local food supporting both environmental and nutritional goals.

But this story I didn't predict:

The head custodian's normal day at Nathan Hale Middle School
will sometimes involve mopping the floors, mowing the grass and baking a
cheesecake. . . [he] dons a chef's hat once a month and conducts a culinary class for any students who want to learn more about cooking or baking.

“Even though I'm the head custodian, I love cooking,” said Shuler,
noting he worked at Norwalk's former Lighthouse Restaurant and attended
culinary school years ago. “You can't judge a book by its cover.”

And as I said before, custodial staff are more than the people pushing
brooms; they are an integral part of keeping our kids healthy and, in this
case, helping them learn to cook. Great job.

(Next up, the ultimate in convergence – we’ll hear about a school custodian leading
his school's green team in cooking healthy snacks on a green diesel bus!)