Randolph?County Schools nutritional director receives honor

Randolph County’s school nutrition director will be honored in July in Kansas City, Mo. for her extraordinary commitment to the school meal programs.

Lorrayne Corley, of Elkins, will represent the Randolph County School District as the Mid East Region’s Outstanding Director of the Year at the annual School Nutrition Association’s National Conference.

“Being nominated is quite an honor,” Corley said. “The nomination is really special to me because it came from my cooks.”

Corley was nominated for this honor by her local staff. The nomination said she meets with her staff regularly and supports their needs by using their input to tailor development workshops and by encouraging them to take state and national certificate courses.

She also helped develop “grab and go” offerings and breakfast in the classroom programs, in addition to traditional breakfast offerings. This positive effort has lead to 50 percent or more participation in 10 out of 15 cafeteria sights.

Within the community, she works with the Elkins Parks and Recreation Board and the Elkins-Randolph County YMCA summer feeding sites.

Corley, who will retire June 30, started her career teaching home economics and social studies at Coalton School in 1975.

“I left Coalton School and joined the staff of the Randolph Technical Center in 1980, where I taught ProStart for 21 years,” she said. “I accepted the position at the board office as Child Nutrition Director in 2001.”

Corley said many changes have come about with the program since 2001.

“Meal patterns and meal requirements have changed because of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act,” Corley said. “We have also started accepting payments for school lunches online, as well as (offering) online applications.”

A big boost for Randolph County families with school age children will be provided by the Community Eligibility Program, she said.

“Beginning next year, this program will provide free breakfast and lunch to 14 of the 15 schools in Randolph County,” Corley said. “This is so important because incomes are so tight right now. It is a big help to everyone and helps ensure that students receive nutritious, healthy meals. Kids cannot learn if they are hungry.”

Corley said she could not do what she does without the dedication of the school cooks.

“These cooks do a tremendous job and they work very hard each day,” Corley said. “They take pride in their work and want to provide the kids with a good, healthy meal. I hate to leave them, they are good people.”

The regional Outstanding Director of the Year Award was created to recognize school nutrition directors who exhibit an extraordinary commitment to their school meal programs.

“School nutrition directors lead programs that must appeal to student preferences and balance student needs while adhering to complex nutrition and food safety standards,” said Sandra Ford, president of the School Nutrition Association. “Lorrayne has excelled in her ability to rise to these challenges, running the Randolph County School meal program on a very tight budget and exhibiting tremendous dedication and commitment to students.”

The directors are responsible for maintaining the quality of the program through student interaction, menu planning and a commitment to serving nutritious, tasty and well-balanced school meals. Through effective oversite of all aspects of food service operations, including budgeting, staffing, training, marketing and community outreach, school nutrition directors ensure the overall success of school meal programs.

The Mid East Region of the School Nutrition Association includes West Virginia, Washington, D.C., Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Maryland and Delaware.