Westminster High School celebrated the 50th anniversary of its Future Farmers of America program with a gathering to recognize the growth and progress it has brought to the Huntington Beach Union High School District campus.
Westminster’s program is a local chapter of the National FFA Organization. Founded in 1928, the organization’s mission is to prepare future generations for the challenges of feeding a growing population. It welcomes students who aspire to become production farmers, teachers, doctors, scientists and entrepreneurs.
“We would not be here today celebrating without the legacy of students, staff, volunteers and leaders before us,” said Principal Amy Sabol. “As with most things, our FFA program and Giving Farm have certainly gone through various seasons of life, and it has taken all of you here today and others who were not able to join us, working together to be creative and dedicated to maintain this very special program.”
The school’s Giving Farm, which is eight acres in size, gives students a supervised agriculture experience complete with an array of animals, a fully-functional aquaponics system, a greenhouse and more. It’s a chance for educators to apply a hands-on education approach with agriculture, one of California’s leading industries, all while having students cultivate fresh produce for families in need.
“FFA has given me the support to not only improve as a leader on campus, but also in my community,” said Mayra Bahena, Westminster High senior and FFA president.
Here are the other stores we’ve been following this week:
- Early-bird registration rates are still available for educators, administrators and other school-based professionals who are interested in attending the annual California MTSS Professional Learning Institute at the Anaheim Convention Center in July.
- A teacher and student from Corona del Mar High School were selected to be part of the 59th class of U.S. Presidential Scholars and Distinguished Teachers.
- Kristie Donavan, a math teacher from Irvine, has been named a finalist in the prestigious Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching program for the second time in three years.
- The Orange County Department of Education recognized five school-based Peer Assistance Leadership programs and three PAL advisors with awards for using creative and innovative practices to increase youth engagement and connectedness.
- Educational partners from Orange County were invited to OC Pathways’ second installment of the K-12 Regional Education Collaborative network sessions on May 16 where a first-of-its kind, centralized system of resources was unveiled.
- More than 300 people attended the Orange County Friday Night Live Partnership’s event at Chapman University, where three schools and an advisor were presented with awards for implementing best practices in youth leadership while leading alcohol and drug prevention initiatives.
- The Santa Ana Unified School District is among 14 school districts and colleges in California that are in line to receive federal grants to hire and train additional mental health professionals.
- Serving an area that is home to the third largest Vietnamese population in the country, OCDE was selected to lead the development of the Southeast Asian curricula.
- A group of students from the Newport-Mesa Unified School District is welcoming children with developmental disabilities to free dance lessons on Sundays as a way to build inclusion and spread kindness.
- Fifth-grade students from the Anaheim Elementary School District were invited to compete in a friendly competition hosted by the Los Angeles-based Conga Kids organization, which provides dance programs to nearly 25,000 children in Southern California.
- Graduation season for high schools, community colleges and universities in Orange County is here. The OC Register compiled a list of event dates for readers.
- A celebratory parade that began during the pandemic in Rossmoor as a way to recognize graduating high school seniors is scheduled to return on June 3.
- Senator Josh Newman introduced a bill that would prohibit school boards from taking action to terminate a superintendent or assistant superintendent within 30 days after first convening following a board election, the Capistrano Dispatch reported.
- Maria Arbelo, an educator who was recently selected as one of the top teachers in the Capistrano Unified School District, was recognized by the Dana Point City Council as its Teacher of the Year.
- The Santa Ana City Council decided to postpone the signing of a years-long arrangement to pay for crossing guards to serve the Santa Ana Unified School District’s 41 campuses and two other schools in central Orange County, as Voice of OC reported.
- Parents are voicing their concerns about threats made on Instagram targeting Black students attending Western High School. As NBC News reported, district leaders say the incident is under investigation with the Anaheim Police Department.
- The Capistrano Unified Board of Trustees approved the spending of nearly $1 million on a multi-tiered plan to support students’ mental health and well-being during a meeting on Wednesday.
This is the part where we encourage you to keep up with local education news stories by bookmarking the OCDE Newsroom, subscribing for emailed updates and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.