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WHS ag teacher awarded CASE grant

WORTHINGTON -- For the second consecutive year, a Worthington High School agriculture teacher and FFA advisor has been awarded a Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education (CASE) grant to advance agriculture education in the high school.

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Worthington High School agriculture teacher and FFA advisor Matt Tripp was awarded a $3,000 CASE grant to purchase equipment used in his agriculture curriculum. (Julie Buntjer/Daily Globe)

WORTHINGTON - For the second consecutive year, a Worthington High School agriculture teacher and FFA advisor has been awarded a Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education (CASE) grant to advance agriculture education in the high school.

Matt Tripp was notified in December that his grant application was approved to receive a $3,000 grant. The money will be used to purchase equipment to aid in leading the CASE curriculum.

A year ago, the teacher earned a $2,600 grant to fund his tuition for a CASE certification course.

“Last year I attended the CASE training for agriculture, food and natural resources,” Tripp said of the course he completed last June. “I got all of the curriculum to teach in the classroom, but to teach it successfully, you have to buy the equipment.”

To purchase all of the equipment used in the curriculum would cost approximately $20,000, and Tripp said the ag department has some of the recommended items already. He plans to use the $3,000 to purchase five LabQuest 2 machines, described as mini computers that collect data. With the LabQuests, Tripp said students will be able to use attachable probes to test soil temperature and moisture, and measure oxygen given off by plants with the oxygen censor.

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“This is used quite a bit in the curriculum,” said Tripp.

With each LabQuest 2 costing more than $300, and probes ranging in price from $50 to $200, Tripp said it will take a while to build up the amount of equipment he will need in the classroom.

“Ideally, I would have one per group of two kids,” he said. “This is basically a building phase to get to the point where we have enough (equipment) for students.”

Tripp said last summer’s certification course provided him with curriculum he used in a soils unit last fall. Since he didn’t have any of the equipment at that time, he improvised.

He’s looking forward now to having the proper equipment for students to use.

Related Topics: EDUCATIONAGRICULTURE
Julie Buntjer became editor of The Globe in July 2021, after working as a beat reporter at the Worthington newspaper since December 2003. She has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism from South Dakota State University.
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