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Montpelier Public School gets $10,000 grant

Montpelier Public School has received a $10,000 grant from America's Farmers Grow Rural Education, which was sponsored by the Monsanto Fund. The district will use the money to enhance agricultural education through new digital measurement technology.

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From left, Tony Roorda, Luke Rode, Meggan Smith and Montpelier Public School Superintendent Jerry Waagen celebrate the grant at the check presentation ceremony Oct. 30.

Montpelier Public School has received a $10,000 grant from America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education, which was sponsored by the Monsanto Fund. The district will use the money to enhance agricultural education through new digital measurement technology.
Middle and high school students will now have access to digital probes and sensors that connect to handheld computers for real-time data collection and analysis. One example of how this new technology will be incorporated into the classroom is studying soil pH levels. Students will take soil samples from local farms to determine pH levels and discover its effect on crop growth. In addition, software will be purchased for students to graph their findings and make connections with the data.
“Today, there are a number of tools available to help farmers improve their productivity, including the use of scientific data,” said Jerry Waagen, superintendent. “The items purchased with this grant give students the opportunity to use these same tools in the classroom. Once they are comfortable with the technology, they will venture to local farms to conduct their own experiments. While they work with and learn from local farmers, students will collect data, analyze it and share their results. Thanks to this grant from the Monsanto Fund, our students get to see the relationship between STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and a successful farming operation.”
Farmers who nominated the school district and representatives from the school and the Monsanto Fund attended a check presentation to celebrate the grant during a school assembly on Oct. 30.
This year the school district also received an educational starter kit from Monsanto Co. to help establish a pollinator garden, which will give students firsthand knowledge of the critical role habitat plays in providing bees and butterflies with food, shelter and places to lay eggs.
Since 2011, Grow Rural Education has awarded more than $9 million to help keep rural public school districts growing. The program works with farmers to nominate public school districts to compete for math and science grants of $10,000 or $25,000. Grant applications are reviewed and finalists are selected by a panel of teachers. Winning applications are chosen by an advisory council comprised of farmers from across the U.S.
Visit www.GrowRuralEducation.com to see the full list of winners for this year.
The program is part of the America’s Farmers initiative. The America’s Farmers campaign and programs have advocated on behalf of farmers and their efforts to meet society’s needs through agriculture.

Related Topics: EDUCATION
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