Agriscience & FFA
Through our Career Education for Students with Disabilities course, our students will gain career skills in Agriscience through a hands-on educational approach. Our students work in our plant nursery that is located on our school campus. We have a shade house, greenhouse, and we are developing a hydroponics area for growing plants and vegetables. Students learn skills for planting, cultivating, watering and feeding, as well as the removal of weeds. The fruits of their efforts are then cleaned and cooked by the students at the school as part of our daily living skills course. Any overage of produce is sold to customers and the proceeds are utilized to restock the nursery as needed.
Our students have a local Chapter for Future Farmers of America. Through FFA students are provided opportunities to develop leadership skills. Students participate in four FFA competitions throughout the school year. The Bartow Middle School and High School FFA members mentor our members through participation in these competitions. During these events, students practice identifying vegetables, garden tools, and farm animals; potting plants; and leadership skills. Our students participate in the annual Polk County Youth Fair in a variety of areas, such as the Horticulture Division and Family and Consumer Science division. Additionally, our FFA students participate in an annual overnight trip to the Polk County Leadership Training Center for a mini-conference. This trip allows students to practice daily living skills and FFA leadership skills while away from home and school.
On October 13th four members of the Jean O’Dell FFA Chapter, Shawn Cheverier, Blayd Kerber, Chad Chaney, and Anna Franklin, traveled to the FFA Leadership Training Center to represent their FFA chapter in the annual Forestry contest and Chapter Officer Leadership Training Conference. They competed against and learned new leadership skills along with more than 30 other members from Karen Siegel FFA, Doris Sanders FFA, Roosevelt FFA, and the Haines City FFA chapter.