Students arriving to the new Summerour Middle in August will have some new scenery on the property and new ways to learn science in a hands-on environment.
The Captain Planet Foundation recently endorsed the school’s Environmental Educations Center, a series of outdoor classrooms and a community-managed agriculture program.
The new 17-acre campus includes a Teaching and Demonstration Garden where students and their families can learn a variety of techniques for growing, harvesting and even cooking fresh vegetables. An adjacent sliver of forest allows students to learn about erosion and watershed management, forest revitalization and restoration of native habitat. Another area has been reserved for a pollinator meadow, intended to attract bees and butterflies and encourage native plants like Joe-Pye to flourish.
“Engaging the community is definitely part of the overall vision,” Summerour principal Dorothy Parker-Jarrett said in a press release. “Seeing adults recycling, gardening and actively caring for the environment sets an excellent example for the kids. And by inviting the community to pitch in with the work, and then encouraging them to harvest fresh vegetables in exchange for their hard work, will hopefully build a sense of stewardship and an interest in being more involved with the school year-round.”
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