Terra Science and Education brought a nationwide STEM program to CNY region from USDA AFRI PD-STEP program, through Teaching Institute for Excellence in STEM to support the Teacher Efficacy in STEM Through Aquaponics in Syracuse.
Terra designed a community-centric, STEM-relevant professional development experiences using aquaponics for teachers in CNY area schools. The project provides a unique and sustainable way to broadly integrate aquaponics into the classroom environment, especially for grades 5-7, with the ultimate goals of equipping teachers and students to design sustainable food systems for urban areas and increasing effective agricultural design and practice into the STEM landscape.
In 2021, Terra provided training, equipment set, and technical support related to aquaponics and aquaponics curricula for 27 grades 5-7 teachers from 9 School Districts in New York State including Syracuse Academy of Science, East Syracuse Minoa, Marcellus, Buffalo Science Academy, Webster, Delhi, Onondaga, Saquoit Valley, Syracuse Academy of Science and Citizenship, and Rochester Academy for Young Men. Each teacher received an aquaponics equipment, materials, and PD equivalent to around $3,000 which makes the total funding distributed around $78,000, which is supported by USDA.
Contact Dr. Richard Beal at [email protected] if you have a question or would like to set up a similar pilot program at your school or disctrict.
Teachers and Schools in the free aquaponics program:
Terra Science will provide a grant support in the amount of $20,000 per academic year, on need basis, to SANY Charter Schools for the following recruitment costs; newspaper and radio advertisements, participation in job fairs, advertisements or postings on websites specific to employee recruitment, government agencies filing fees, and related expenses.
The project director, Lora Hine, manager of Xraise, is the education and public outreach program at the Cornell Laboratory for Accelerator-based Sciences and Education (CLASSE), a NSF-funded research facility at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. Xraise will be working in collaboration with Dr. Susan Eschbach, principal of the Beverly J. Martin (BJM) Elementary School, and the second/third grade teacher teams at BJM Elementary School. Beverly J. Martin is located in Ithaca, NY and is part of the Ithaca City School District.
Akwesasne, Chemung, Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, St. Lawrence, Steuben, Wayne, Yates
Note: Terra Fairs Fellows are not eligible for School Fairs Grants.
As a friend of SANY Schools, Terra provides special grant programs for SANY Schools and students. Terra leases below the market rate (usually $5-8/sqf) school buildings to SANY Schools and provides additional funding as detailed below to support its mission.