Culinary Arts Policies
Tasting, Meals and Leftovers
Culinary Arts at KCC is an educational enterprise, not a buffet. You should eat something before attending class so you are not hungry when cooking. Smelling, touching and tasting are key components of the learning processes and tasting is meant for you to understand the cooking process. When instructional goals are met, you may enjoy a meal during or after class, time- and instructor-permitting, but know that there is no obligation or expectation that classes include meals. Leftovers, whenever possible, should be repurposed for use in other classes or used for catered events. All other leftovers should be donated or discarded. Students may not take food from the kitchen unless given specific permission by the instructor.
You are required to be dressed appropriately for class each week. You will not be allowed to participate if you fail to comply in one, or more, key areas:
- Clean white chef coat with KCC logo (available at the KCC bookstore)
- White skullcap (available at the KCC bookstore)
- Long hair tied back and covered with a hairnet
- Black, slip-resistant, closed-toed shoes (no high heels or sandals)
- Nails clean, unpolished and trimmed (no fake or long nails)
- Clean apron and side towel, laundered on your own
- Black or checkered chef's pants (no shorts, skirts, dresses, tights, sweatpants)
- No jewelry
- No perfumes, colognes and strong scents
- Bimetallic stem thermometer
- Black permanent marker
This uniform policy applies to both lab and lecture classes. If you are not in full uniform, compliant in each area above, you may not participate in class and you will be marked absent for the day.
Keeping personal items (cell phones, books, coats, bags, etc.) at your kitchen-station violates safety and sanitation principles. Most kitchens have lockers for student use. Bring a small padlock or combination lock to class each day to secure your personal belongings. These lockers are for use only during class time--any locks remaining after class will be clipped by security and the items held in the public safety office.
Because culinary classes are hands-on, there is no way to entirely "make up" a missed class; you can't copy notes or read the textbook and expect to succeed in this program. Per KCC attendance policy, two absences (excused and unexcused) in a class that meets once weekly are allowed. A third absence means you are missing 25%, or more, of the course and your grade will be a WU (unofficial withdrawal). Two significant lateness marks count as an absence (meaning that either more than four instances of lateness OR more than one absence and two instances lateness will also result in a WU).
Your instructor will give you guidelines for letting her or him know when you anticipate being late or absent. Because KCC's Culinary Arts program is a professional program preparing you for the industry, you must let your instructor know when you will be late or absent. No call/no show is as unacceptable in this program as it is in the industry.
Per KCC Student Handbook:
What is Excessive Absence?
A student in any course who has been absent 15% of the total number of instructional hours that a class meets during a semester or session is deemed excessively absent. Where the course includes classroom lectures plus another component such as a lab/field placement, etc., the 15% excessive absence policy applies to either component. Excessive absences may result in the instructor assigning either a lower grade or a "WU" for that course [Culinary Arts program faculty assign a WU]. Consistent with the college-wide policy on appealing final grades, the student may appeal such a grade.
Instructional hours per semester/Excessive absences for semester:
- 24 hours [CA 21] = 4 hours of absences
- 36 hours [CA 50, 60; TAH 43, 71, 73, 8174] = 6 hours of absences
- 60 hours [CA 1, 2, 3, 11, 12, 8210; TAH 72, 74] = 9 hours of absences
In culinary classes at KCC, we use a competency-based approach to grading. In order to earn an "A" you must be able to perform all skills that the course requires. You will never be graded on getting it perfect that first time, but you will need to perform each task in a reasonable timeframe in order to get full credit for the activity.
Many classes use a weekly performance grade. These are not "free points" but rather are based on classroom performance. To earn these points the student must:
- arrive on time, dressed professionally (complying with uniform code) and ready to work. Violation of uniform policy may result in forfeiture of weekly grade or expulsion from class.
- have completed written and mental mise en place: reading, homework, recipe cards, etc.
- complete assigned kitchen and classroom tasks successfully.
- work safely, cleanly and with a sense of urgency. Sanitation or safety violations may result in forfeiture of weekly grade or expulsion from class.
- actively engage in cleanup and leave with the class. Leaving before the class is officially dismissed or not engaging in cleanup will count as a lateness.
No cell phones in class!
Texting or making calls in the kitchen is not only disrespectful to the instructor and your classmates, it invites contamination from the dirtiest item in your kitchen: your cell phone. Cell phones spend time alongside your mouth, nose, hair, and worst of all, in your pants packet. They cannot be cleaned thoroughly. On average they carry more bacteria than a public toilet seat (which, unlike cell phones, are easily cleaned). If you make a phone call on a break or before class, treat your phone as a food hazard and wash your hands thoroughly after each use.
No cell phones in class means not only using of cell phones, but also not charging them either. Phones should be kept in your locker, or otherwise out of sight.
Handwashing and Hygiene
Wash your hands when entering the kitchen, after eating, smoking or making a phone call, after returning from the restroom, when switching from one task to another, after touching any part of your body (especially face, mouth, nose or hair,) and in general more often than you are used to washing them.
Aprons and sidetowels should be removed before leaving the kitchen and especially before visiting the restroom.
Any egregious violations of kitchen sanitation principles (such as tasting with your finger, sitting on a tabletop, or double-dipping with a tasting spoon), will result in immediate expulsion from class and will count as an absence for the day.
Professional cooking is physically demanding. Students in the CA major or taking CA courses should be comfortable:
- lifting 50 pounds above waist height.
- possessing full range of motion to bend, kneel, squat and reach.
- standing for at least five continuous hours.
- performing repeated motion tasks such as slicing and whisking.
If you feel you are unable to meet one or more of these requirements, please consult with your instructor to see if an accommodation is possible.
Per the Accessibility Office, it is the student's obligation to notify the instructor in writing of any disabilities and requested accommodations that he or she wishes to disclose.
The kitchen should always be cleaner at the end of class than it was at the beginning. It is the obligation of the class to keep the kitchen clean. Typically, a class is divided into clean-up teams:
- Wash dishes using a three-compartment sink and warewasher, if available.
- Wash sinks and drain warewasher.
- Air dry and put away dishes/pots.
- Organize equipment storage.
- Req and Food.
- Pack up leftover food for repurposing.
- Discard remaining leftovers.
- Prepare requisition/shopping list for the next class.
- Document leftovers/returns for use by other classes for the instructor.
- Organize fridge, freezer and dry storage.
- Bag and take out trash (last thing).
Counters and Floors
- Wash all counter surfaces, fridge doors and bottom shelves.
- Wash range and clean drip pans.
- Sweep and mop floor.
The culinary program does not do student laundry. Come to class each week with a clean chef coat, apron and side towel. It is your obligation to take these items home and wash them. If you do not have your chef coat, apron and side towel, you ma not participate in class.
Only the instructor dismisses the class. While classes are designed to finish on time, the speed of the class in production and cleanup will determine dismissal time. Leaving before dismissal counts the same as a lateness for purposes of attendance and grading.
Statement on Civility
Kingsborough Community College is committed to the highest standards of academic and ethical integrity, acknowledging that respect for self and others is the foundation of educational excellence.
Civility in the classroom and respect for the opinions of others is very important in an academic environment. It is likely you may not agree with everything which is said or discussed in the classroom, yet courteous behavior and responses are expected. Therefore, in the classroom, any acts of harassment and/or discrimination based on matters of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and/or ability are not acceptable. Foul language, raised voices, or verbal or physical threats are not acceptable.
Whether we are students, faculty, or staff, we have a right to be in a safe environment, free of disturbance, and civil in all aspects of human relations.
Students are held to the CUNY Policy on Academic Integrity.