Special-needs students learning culinary arts at Cave Creek school district classes

Participants (students and aides) in Education and Community Services’ Unified Culinary Arts 1 class. (Photo courtesy of ECS).

Unified Culinary Arts 1, for 11th grade through age 22, was introduced this summer at Education and Community Services, a department of the Cave Creek Unified School District.

“It has been a goal of ECS Enrichment to offer classes for students and adults with special needs,” Elaine Vallario, ECS Enrichment coordinator, said in a release.

“Bobbie Burt was the perfect instructor to pull together a class with fun, yummy and practical activities for this group of students,” she said.

“They enjoyed it greatly and we are encouraged to offer more during the upcoming school year,” Ms. Vallario said in the release.

Students and aides in the Education and Community Services’ Unified Culinary Arts 1 class. (Photo courtesy of ECS).

Students were instructed on the secrets of correct weighing, how to use small utensils and appliances and follow recipes. They also learned sanitary food handling and personal hygiene for the kitchen, according to the release.

“Students enjoyed preparing – and eating – a variety of dishes from salads, soups to desserts, using their newly acquired skills. Techniques varied according to skill levels appropriate of the groups,” according to the release.

General-education high school students who had taken culinary courses throughout the school year were volunteer assistants in the class, according to the release.

At the next cooking class, Unified Thanksgiving Cooking Fun, students ages 13 and older will learn how to make festive recipes that celebrate the Thanksgiving season.

The class is to be held 9 a.m.-noon on four consecutive Saturdays, Oct. 27, Nov. 3, Nov. 10 and Nov. 17.

Prerequisites for the class include the ability to work independently. For the safety of the student, the class may not be appropriate for students who require one-on-one support, according to the release.

For information on future Unified Culinary Arts classes, visit ECS at ecsforall.org or call 480-575-2440.

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