News from New York Agriculture in the Classroom
Contact: Angela McGregor Hedstrom, Coordinator
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 10, 2012
Students connect to agriculture and the food system by growing food at school
Ithaca, N.Y.— Since 1998, Kids Growing Food, a program of New York Agriculture in the Classroom, has helped create and support nearly 400 school food gardens, providing K-12 students throughout New York with hands-on agricultural experiences. This year, five schools received the Kids Growing Food Grant for the first time to help start or sustain their school garden and three schools received the Kids Growing Food II: Continuation Grant which helps to maintain their Kids Growing Food gardens that are already established.
We would like to recognize and congratulate the grant recipients for 2012. The recipients of the 2012 Kids Growing Food I Grants are: Brighter Choice Charter School for Girls from Albany County, Casey Park Elementary School from Cayuga County, Roxbury Central School from Delaware County, Bloomfield Central School from Ontario County, and Hampton Bays Middle School from Suffolk County. The recipients of the 2012 Kids Growing Food II Continuation Grant are: Canton Central School from St. Lawrence County, Sharon Springs Central School from Schoharie County, and PS 107 from Kings County.
Kids Growing Food gardens help raise teachers’ and students’ agricultural awareness by making connections to food, farming, and nutrition. The garden serves as a “garden classroom” where food-based learning is integrated with math, science, language arts, and social studies, helping teachers meet core curriculum requirements. Growing food at school helps students gain an understanding of how the local food system works and serves as a link to local farmers, producers, businesses, and others involved in agriculture.
Kids Growing Food garden grant recipients are awarded $500 to help create and sustain their school gardens. In addition, recipients receive educational resources, workshop opportunities, and access to a growing network of school food gardeners throughout the state. The garden sites participate in the NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets Farm to You Fest!, which promotes New York and locally-grown food and healthy food choices in school cafeterias.
For more information about the Kids Growing Food school garden program, visit the New York Agriculture in the Classroom website at www.nyaged.org/aitc/. New York Agriculture in the Classroom is a partnership of Cornell University, NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, NYS Education Department, Cornell Cooperative Extension, and New York Farm Bureau. Working with Cooperative Extension educators, classroom teachers, and volunteers throughout the state, New York Agriculture in the Classroom fosters an awareness, understanding, and appreciation of our food and fiber system.