Thanks to all of you who showed up last night! We had a great crowd of about 20 people who seemed enthusiastic to get this project started!

There were a few representatives from Providence Day School, who are looking at expanding their existing garden, some interested parents gathering information for Charlotte Country Day, and some parents from Shamrock Gardens Elementary.

Pam Grundy, the mother of a Shamrock 1st grader, spoke pursuasively on the benefits that a schoolyard garden could bring to the kids and families at her school, while being very upfront about the support that the school would need, both leadership and financial, to bring such a program to fruition. The people in attendance pledged their support to working to start a program at Shamrock.

Consensus seemed to be that we would start with a garden, possibly working within the gifted classroom to begin with, and later expanding to other classes and grades. The point was made that teachers have a lot to do, and that the incorporation of a garden and nutrition information integration into the classroom should come from the desire and enthusiasm of the teachers themselves, rather than administration.

The group signed up for committees, with the thought that we would meet again before the holidays (cookies? Eggnog?). The Finance/Business committee is going to be looking into possible funding sources for the Shamrock program, as well as corporate sponsorship. The Public Relations committee will also be helping to establish support for the program through recruiting other volunteers, meeting with parents and faculty to spread enthusiasm for the program, and hopefully help to expand the program to other schools in the future. The Garden committee is going to be dealing with the nuts and bolts of getting a garden established- where to dig, who will dig, how big, what to plant, etc. The Food Committee will be looking for ways to introduce healthy, fresh eating to the students and faculty to begin with, later to help interested teachers and kitchen staff incorporate better nutrition into the classroom and school day.

Each committee is going to have a chairperson who will liaison with the other committee heads to work towards the common goal. Emails are going out today to all committee members with contact information for all. Everyone is encouraged to sign up on this website to ease communication.

If you have not signed up for a committee, or know of anyone who would like to become involved in this project, please email me at mjfitz@comporium.net with your name, email, phone number and what committee you would like to be placed on. Include any special skills or connections you may have (i.e.- I own a landscaping company and will donate 20 hand trowels).

Thanks again to everyone, and I look forward to working with all of you!

Michaele Fitzpatrick

Tags: committees, edible, meeting, schoolyard

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