Temecula Valley High School (TVHS) held a Biosustainability Greenhouse Grand Opening for parents and supporters of their CTA-Institute For Teaching sponsored project. What began as a small in-class model became a successful grant application last spring. TVHS also spotlighted their culinary arts program, as students who will soon be receiving fresh produce and fish from the greenhouse prepared gourmet appetizers for 125 guests who attended the event.
Community leaders Temecula City Council Member Maryann Edwards, Temecula Valley School Board Member Sandra Hinkson, and superintendent Tim Ritter joined Temecula Valley Educators Association President Jeff Kingsberg to celebrate the completion of the superstructure, grow beds and fish tanks while honoring teacher Toby Brannon for his inspiration and leadership in service to students.
After arrival and appetizers, the group moved to a small auditorium where students and sponsors were acknowledged for their part in the project. Grant recipient and biology teacher Toby Brannon praised the efforts of club members whose labor and innovation was the cornerstone to this successful effort.
CTA-IFT manager Dick Gale spoke about the power of a teacher’s idea to drive change in approach that leads to enhanced student experiences and learning. A short student film about the project’s impact on learning was shared, followed by the official opening and visit of the greenhouse.
Biosustainability Club members served as guides for parents and visitors, showing how each of the parts of the system- tanks, pumps, pipes, and grow beds- work symbiotically to produce fresh fish and produce.
A number of club members are also preparing curriculum and will serve as leaders for TVHS Biosustainability Summer Camp, where they will teach elementary and middle school students throughout the district about ecology and sustainable farming.