Urban Education Farm Feasibility Study
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Urban Education Farm Feasibility Study

Urban Education Farm Feasibility Study
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(In Spanish, Somali, or Hmong)
As part of our commitment to students’ health and supporting their ability to learn, Minneapolis Public Schools Culinary and Wellness Services is conducting a feasibility study for an urban educational farm model. Thanks to generous funding from the Target Foundation and support from the MPS leadership and staff, this study will help the District determine what type of educational farm model could look like. The study will be completed by the end of September, 2018.
 
What is an urban educational farm?
 
Urban educational “farms” can take many shapes. Central themes often include: merging indoor and outdoor learning experiences, building connection to food sources, learning by doing, and building community.
 
Here are some examples of existing urban educational farms that we’re modeling in various ways to transform children's relationships with food:
  • Edible Schoolyard Project in California is a garden, kitchen, and cafeteria at King Middle School, serving as a demonstration site and innovation hub for the edible education curriculum and pedagogy.
  • The EUSD Farm Lab is an innovative outdoor learning campus for students in the Encinitas Union School District. It includes a community garden, a play forest, a food meadow and more.
  • Great Kids Farm in Baltimore City is a living, working farm that educates students of all ages about healthy eating, sustainable agriculture and the natural sciences.
  • Manteca Unified School District Farm to School in California is both a working small farm which supplies a significant portion of produce served in school cafeterias and a direct extension of the classroom where students may learn and apply concepts taught in the classroom.
  • Alachua County Public School’s Farm to School to Work Hub in Florida is a place where students can learn about the food system by experiencing it. 
  • South Whidbey School Farms in Washington is an integrated K-12 program teaching farm-based and culinary education in an inquiry-based curriculum, with the students growing the food. 
     
How is this funded?
 
The feasibility study is fully and generously funded by Target. As part of the study, our partners will be developing self-sustaining funding options for the educational farm. Neither the feasibility study nor the farm itself will have any negative impact on the MPS general fund.
 
What will MPS’s urban educational farm be like?
 
The purpose of the community engagement phase (March through the end of the school year) is to involve students, community groups, parents, and faculty/staff in contributing their perspectives about what’s best for MPS. No matter the outcome, education will be the core purpose.
 
Where will it be located?
 
We are excited to be working with curriculum and learning experts, landscape architects, soil professionals, agricultural educators, surveyors, planners and other experts to conduct a site selection process based on the outcomes of the input phase.
 
When will we find out more?
 
The community engagement phase lasts through the end of the school year. In September, 2018, the consulting team will recommend a site and model for the educational farm. We look forward to sharing more as the process moves forward!
 
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