Jones Education Center Donations Start Gardens
Later this fall, Kari Wallace hopes to see a planting area at the Jones Education Center filled with vegetables and herbs that her students can use for cooking. The planters were built last spring by the students with assistance from Flint Hills Technical College construction students and donations from businesses and individuals.
Wallace, teacher for Transitions Program at the Jones Center, said the project was made possible by donations from the Westar Green Team, Sutherlands, Gray Woodworking & Construction, and several individuals.
FHTC construction technology teachers Benjamin Gray and Nathan Knight brought their students to the Jones Center to help Wallace’s students prepare the site and build the wooden planters. The lumber and building supplies were donated by Jason Miller at Sutherlands. Once completed, dirt was donated by Jamie Adams and hauled to the site by Kelly Farr.
This fall, gardening supplies, tools and hoses were provided by the Westar Green Team, according to Jeff Grabbe, Westar representative.
Wallace said the goal is to incorporate planting and composting into the curriculum at the Jones Center, where she works with students age 18 – 21 who are transitioning from school to the workplace. The Transitions Program serves 11 students this year from all seven districts in the Flint Hills Special Education Cooperative.
Transitions students cook for events and the vegetables and herbs will be included in the menus, Wallace said. Students also will learn about planting the food crops, caring for them and harvesting. Many students are interested in composting and Wallace plans to create a location to start the compost.