District Receives $25,000 America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education Grant
Written by WBTA STAFF on September 5, 2018
Jeffery Parnapy in his classroom
Bergen, NY ~ Two years of hard work are paying off for High School Science Teacher Jeffrey Parnapy and his colleagues in the form of a $25,000 grant from America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education. The grant money will be used to purchase data collection instruments for 7th through 12th grade science classes and to bolster the newly established agriculture program, now in its second year.
The school was nominated by several local farmers for the grant, which is designated to support STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programs in rural public school districts. Parnapy, who teaches biology and agriculture, spearheaded the grant proposal with help from his science colleagues Michael Conine, Briana Delvecchio, Jenifer Faro, Peter Spence, and Terry Vick. The grant money will benefit all of the science classes by providing a range of specialized equipment including meteorological instruments and soil and water analysis equipment.
“We are so excited to be receiving the $25,000 America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education Grant,” said Jr./Sr. High School Principal Patrick McGee. “A huge thank you to our Ag and Science teacher Mr. Parnapy for doing the leg work behind the scenes to win this grant. Last year we started an initiative to bring an Agriculture program back into our building. We established an Agriculture elective and started FFA (Future Farmers of America). This year we will offer two Ag classes and our FFA program continues to grow. The grant money will go a long way into providing even more resources and opportunities for our students in the coming years.”
The agricultural program was established during the 2017-2018 school year at the suggestion of McGee and Byron-Bergen Superintendent Mickey Edwards. Parnapy enthusiastically agreed to head the program and founded the Byron-Bergen chapter of the FFA. Parnapy earned his degree in animal science from Cornell University and has eight years of experience teaching agriculture in other school districts. He is excited to bring his expertise to the Byron-Bergen students and use the grant award to the greatest advantage of current and future students.
A check presentation ceremony will take place at the Board of Education meeting on Thursday, September 13, 2018 at 7 p.m. in the Professional Development room at the Jr./Sr. High School.
This project was made possible by local farmers and America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund.
About America’s Farmers
The America’s Farmers campaign highlights the importance of modern US Agriculture through communications and community outreach programs that partner with farmers to impact rural America. To learn more, visit America’s Farmers at www.AmericasFarmers.com.
About the Monsanto Fund
The Monsanto Fund, the philanthropic arm of the Monsanto Company, is a nonprofit dedicated to strengthening farm communities and the communities where Monsanto employees live and work.