Upbring Careers

Head Start Cook

Job ID
US-TX-Bay City
Regular Full-Time
Additional Location 1
1st Shift
# of Openings Remaining


Upbring, the new Lutheran Social Services of the South, is a 135 year-old nonprofit organization with a rich legacy of serving vulnerable people across Texas. Its mission is to break the cycle of child abuse by empowering children, families and communities. Upbring serves more than 30,000 people annually and provides innovative programs and services for children including foster care, adoption, education, residential treatment and community services. For more information, visit Upbring.org.


General Description:

The Cook is responsible for implementation of food services in a Head Start program serving children ages 3-5. Responsibilities include preparing attractive, USDA-approved meals; keeping the kitchen clean and sanitary according to Health Department ordinances; and maintaining adequate food stocks, kitchen supplies, and food service records.


Essential Functions:

The Cook will ultimately be evaluated on a combination of skills, dispositions and behaviors, some of which are related to the specific service area of this position and others that represent general expectations of all Upbring employees.


Nutritious Cooking: Prepares nutritious meals that take into consideration children’s various cultures and individual nutritional needs.

  • Understands and uses child nutritional needs and age-specific portion sizes to prepare meals in accordance with USDA, Head Start, and CACFP guidelines
  • Understands and strictly adheres to health, safety, food handling and sanitation requirements before, during and after meal preparation.
  • Follows menu guidelines and adjusts when necessary due to an availability of menu items or an individual child’s needs.
  • Plan and participate in nutritious cooking activities with children.

The Cook’s responsibilities chiefly fall within the following core functions, although s/he may perform other tasks as needed:



  • Prepare assigned menu and participate in family-style meals with children, volunteers, and staff.
  • Work in conjunction with the Site Supervisor and Faculty to monitor family style dining in classrooms and document as appropriate.
  • Maintain food service record-keeping and reporting as directed by supervisor.
  • Conduct weekly inventory of food and supplies.
  • Complete weekly food and supplies order sheets and fax to Headquarters.
  • Check food deliveries for accuracy and for good quality. Notify Headquarters when an item is missing or of poor quality.
  • Store food and supplies properly. Date all canned, boxed and bagged foods. Use the FIFO method of inventory.
  • Monitor and maintain proper food temperatures.
  • Monitor and maintain proper temperatures of all refrigerator and freezers.
  • Maintain appropriate cleanliness of all kitchen materials and supplies as required.
  • Maintain list and be aware of center food allergies and concerns. Prepare alternate menu items as needed for the affected children.
  • Assist in delivery of food to classrooms and of dirty dishes from the classroom.

General Staff Responsibilities

  • Participate in staff meetings, conferences, training sessions and workshops as assigned.
  • Maintain confidentiality in regards to staff and family information.
  • Fulfill role as mandated reporter as stated in Child Abuse and Neglect Policy.
  • Perform any other work-related duties as requested by your supervisor.
  • Be present at work in order to provide consistency of services.
  • Be a contributory team member in a positive/productive manner.
  • Demonstrate commitment to mission, values, and policies in the performance of daily duties

Additional Functions:

  • Perform other duties as directed.


  • High School diploma or equivalent.
  • ServSafe Certification or obtain such certification within 3 months.
  • Experience in purchasing and preparing culturally diverse foods for groups
  • Knowledge of early childhood nutrition
  • Lift and move heavy and/or bulky objects weighing up to 50 lbs.


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