The agriculture education program was designed to align with curriculum requirements for Grade 9 and 10 science, Grade 11 biology and environmental science, and Grade 12 biology. Students attended the program for one class period (75 minutes), and rotated through agriculture-themed stations, covering topics such as: soil and aquatic health, green energy, marketing and labeling for food products and GMOs. Each station was also designed to encourage students to consider careers in the agri-business field, by making them aware of the career paths available in this multi-faceted industry.
“Agriculture is one of the largest industries in Durham Region, and it’s important to educate local youth about potential education and career opportunities, as well as the economic and environmental contribution of the agriculture sector within the region,” said Nancy Rutherford, Manager of Economic Development, Agriculture and Rural Affairs for Durham Region. “We are grateful for the support from our local school boards, agricultural organizations, and the many volunteers that make the Durham Farm Connections high school program bigger and better each year.”
Now in its seventh year, the Durham Farm Connections high school program is organized by volunteers and supported by Durham Region’s Planning and Economic Development Department. The program seeks to help students better understand their food supply, the environmental contributions of farming and the real-life application of science in agriculture.
The high school program is an expansion of the Grade 3 Durham Farm Connections program, held annually since 2006, which also meets curriculum requirements by educating students about farming. In recognition of its success, Durham Farm Connections received a Premier’s Award for agri-food innovation excellence in 2007. For more information about Farm Connections, please visit www.durhamfarmconnections.ca.