DANVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) — One parent showed up to the Danville School Board meeting on Wednesday with a stack of paperwork. She claimed the process of picking a produce provider for the district was mishandled.
“There were no bids presented at this board meeting on Sept. 7 and they went ahead and passed it, approved all of them,” Lisa Behrens said.
She’s talking about a meeting where a board member asked how many bids there were for the Danville School District’s produce provider. At the same meeting, Behrens said a vote was taken without any discussion of the bids.
She started investigating and got the proposal through a FOIA request; she said it only indicated two bids. But she said the records show the food service director received three of them.
Behrens said the board should have talked about which one to choose, but didn’t, leaving her frustrated because a portion of her income goes directly to the district.
“I think, as District 118 parents and supporters and above all, taxpayers, for federally-funded food programs, we need to be diligent,” Behrens said.
She also claimed the bids she received left out pricing, so she wondered if they could have picked a cheaper option.
Superintendent Alicia Geddis responded to her by addressing how the bidding process works, saying it’s been the same for years.
“We belong to a co-op and they handle the bid process for us as they do for the State of Illinois,” Geddis said. “Seven years ago, the food service director signed us up for a co-op.”
But Behrens still has questions and wants answers because she said having quality food is critical, especially for students who rely on school meals.
“The only food they get is when they come to school,” Behrens said of these students.
Geddis also said at the meeting that the co-op process is a cheaper option for school districts.