South Whidbey School Farms, started in 2014, is an integrated K-12 program teaching farm-based and culinary education in an inquiry-based curriculum, with the students growing the food. The organic produce grown is eaten by the students during farm and culinary classes, in school lunches, at events and school functions, and is also shared with local non-profits.
Seasonally, we sell a significant amount of the produce served in the school lunch program to Chartwells, the school district’s corporate food service provider. We were the first school district in the nation to follow the Chartwells School Garden Guide protocols for delivering produce on a regular basis to the school lunches.
The culinary program, (also known as SNACC – Student Nutrition and Culinary Community) teaches students grades 3 – 8 how to prepare and cook with the vegetables they grow, and also organizes events such as the Thanksgiving Feast, Earth Day and Orcas Picnic. The students grow the vegetables for these events, and help prepare and serve the food.
There are over 2200 student visits to our farms and gardens each month during the growing season. The classes are designed around learning how to cultivate healthy soil and grow food, and the work needed to accomplish that, with the intent of also meeting Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards. The farms are managed to create learning opportunities for students, and to maximize their participation in growing the produce they love to eat.
- The 1/2 acre School Farm is located at 5476 Maxwelton Rd., Langley, WA behind the South Campus and just to the south of the Elementary School. Students K-6 come to the farm weekly or bi-weekly for farm-based classes, and grade 3 – 6 have bi-weekly culinary classes. A small, rotating group of ten 5/6th graders is a daily Farm Team. The School Farm grows for the cafeterias, culinary classes, eating during farm classes, events and sharing with non-profits Whidbey Island Nourishes and Good Cheer Food Bank.
- The CAFE Garden, started in spring 2017 thanks to a grant from kidsgardening.org, is next to the culinary classroom in the CAFE (Culinary Arts and Farm Education) portable just south of the Elementary School. Vegetables and herbs for the culinary classes are grown there.
- The High School has two gardens, the 1/4 acre Front Garden, started in spring 2017, and the 1/4 acre “Back Quarter” Farm, that grow a wide range of vegetables and flowers for student consumption, events and culinary classes. They are the living classrooms for the daily Agriculture class, weekly 7th grade science classes, and the 7/8th grade Farm Team.
- The Langley Middle School Garden is being used for production growing for the cafeterias.
- The Big ACRE at Bayview is a collaboration between the School District and the Good Cheer Food Bank to grow produce for the Food Bank and the school cafeterias.
The School Farms program is funded by the South Whidbey School District, Goosefoot Community Fund, and community donations. To donate, click HERE.
We welcome volunteers to help in both farm and culinary classes, and in our events. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.