East School Rebounds with Perfect Score on Health Inspection After Failing in the Fall


After failing a health inspection the fall, the food services staff at East School earned a perfect score following the most recent unannounced visit from a town sanitarian.

The school on Sept. 16 had been cited by the New Canaan Health Department for a major violation—the first such problem found there through dozens of inspections in 10 years.

Specifically, a health inspector discovered chlorine sanitizer in a wiping cloth bucket to be at a toxic level of 200 parts per million, according to records obtained by NewCanaanite.com. A correction plan outlined by the sanitarian included remaking the mixture at 50 to 100 ppm and training staff members.

In surprise inspections conducted at least three times during the academic year, municipal health officials note any violation on a form that categorizes and grades each of them from one to four, with four being the most serious. A total of 100 points are possible, and each violation is deducted from that score. A food service establishment is said to have “failed” an inspection if its total score is less than 80 or if it’s cited for a 4-point violation.

Prior to the September inspection, the East School cafeteria staff had an active streak of passing going further back (to January 2007) than any other among the New Canaan Public Schools.

During a Jan. 19 visit, a Health Department sanitarian once again found zero violations at East.

Here’s how the other schools fared during the most recent inspection:

  • South School—perfect score of 100 (Jan. 9)
  • West School—99 (cited on Jan. 19 for too little chlorine in cloth bucket sanitizer mixture)
  • Saxe Middle School—perfect score of 100 (Jan. 18)
  • New Canaan High School—95 (told to remove wiping cloth bucket from the hand sink during Jan. 18 visit)

The last time each of the other schools failed an inspection due to major violations was:

  • South—Jan. 23, 2012: improperly cooled chicken soup;
  • West—June 1, 2010: cream cheese, butter, sour cream and shredded cheese all improperly stored on top of a tray of frozen ice; overly diluted bleach sanitizer at 3-bay sink;
  • Saxe—Jan. 26, 2012: dented, 6-pound can of Furmano’s chickpeas stored in dry storage area;
  • New Canaan High School—Sept. 1, 2015: cooked chicken kept at improperly low temperature.

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