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Collierville Middle gets $25,000 Grow Rural grant

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From left, Collierville Middle School Principal Roger Jones, teacher Mark Gray and Collierville Schools Superintendent John Aitken accept the $25,000 Grow Rural check in the school garden.

From left, Collierville Middle School Principal Roger Jones, teacher Mark Gray and Collierville Schools Superintendent John Aitken accept the $25,000 Grow Rural check in the school garden.

Collierville School District has received a $25,000 grant from America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund.
The district will use the money to build community garden, equipment shed, chicken coop and run at Collierville Middle School. These resources will help enhance math and science education for seventh and eighth grade students, who will now have the opportunity to learn more about the food they eat and how it is grown.
Additionally, students will have more hands-on learning opportunities in real-life situations.
“Our students will now have an opportunity to learn about food production while gaining a sense of ownership, achievement and school pride as they see the fruits of their labor through daily analysis,” said Mark Gray, science teacher at Collierville Middle School.
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 PTA meeting on Oct. 20.
This year the school district also received an educational starter kit from Monsanto Company to help establish a pollinator garden, which will give students first-hand 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 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. A sister program, America’s Farmers Grow Communities, is currently enrolling farmers for 2016. To sign up, visit www.GrowCommunities.com before Nov. 30.
These programs are 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.
Today, consumers are more interested than ever in agriculture and how food is grown. Farmers and others in the industry are joining in on the conversation to help raise awareness about agriculture and share their stories with their communities. Learn more at cfiengage.org.

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