Food Services Get Bad Mark


A photo of the health inspection report

Miami Dade County health Inspectors gave an unsatisfactory mark to Miami Country Day School’s cafeteria services in March, noting rodent droppings under an electrical transformer.


Inspectors checked off other code violations on March 18: Food container, ventilation, storage, sufficient equipment, cleanliness of equipment and methods of washing.


A few days later, the inspectors returned and found that the SAGE Dining, which operates the cafeteria, corrected all the problems.


Miami Country Day School Business Administrator Gary Butts said that these problems arise from time to time because the school cannot afford pest control services every day, only on a monthly basis.


“You are going to have this kind of situation unless you can afford to have them come every single day, which no one can afford,” he said. “When this is an issue they come back here and take care of it.”


WPLG Channel 10 reported on the school’s food violation in a recent news report, as part of an ongoing investigation of cafeteria services in schools. School Headmaster John Davies alerted faculty and parents to the report.


“We were a sitting duck for an expensive private school that found an unsatisfactory health rating,” Gary Butts said.


He said this is the first time Country Day has had this problem in the cafeteria. He pointed out that the violations occurred in the storage area under an electrical transformer, not where the food is prepared and served.


In Florida, buildings are not completely sealed, which leaves small openings for rats, cockroaches and other rodents to enter. Among these spaces are suspended ceilings, crawl spaces and soffits with ventilation.


“We monitor it constantly to make sure this doesn’t happen,” Butts said. “But unless you are in a sealed up building, you are always going to have these issues. That’s why you have rodent companies and pest control all working to prevent this from happening.”