The school has been notified it has been awarded a $4,050 grant from Lowe’s Home Improvement to be used to construct a greenhouse on the school grounds.
Kendrick Middle School Teacher Wayne Clayton announced Friday receipt of a letter confirming the grant had been awarded to Kendrick, and he is already begun collecting the needed materials for the greenhouse.
“My plans are to take this letter and present it this week to the Lowe’s Home Improvement store in Stockbridge and begin getting the necessary materials together to start the greenhouse,” he said.
Clayton added school principal, Marcus Jackson, Ed.D., has supported efforts to receive the Lowe’s grant and construct the greenhouse from the outset.
“Whether construction of the greenhouse is complete or in its final stages, I will start purchasing the plants that will initially go into it,” Clayton said.
Although Lowe’s gives millions of dollars in grants to schools throughout the country for education-elated improvements, the process of receiving one of the grants is not automatic.
Clayton said he submitted the grant request months ago but the school only received official confirmation just in the last week or two.
As to the location of the greenhouse, Clayton said the school has several courtyards on its grounds and his goal is to construct it at one of these courtyard areas.
He estimates construction of the greenhouse should only take a few days.
“Our plan is to have the greenhouse complete as quickly as possible and then let the students start planting the fruits and vegetables themselves,” Clayton added.
Although he hopes the school cafeteria will be able to use many of the fresh fruits and vegetables grown in the greenhouse in its own kitchen and consumed by students, he also hopes the youngsters will be able to sell some of these locally-grown foodstuffs.
Construction of the greenhouse won’t entirely be the responsibility of school volunteers, he said.
“As part of the grant, Lowe’s will be assisting us in constructing the greenhouse, along with school staff, personnel and students,” Clayton said.
He added that despite this grant, he will continue to secure additional grants.
“I want our kids to be involved in their studies so I am always going to be on the lookout for applying for larger grants we can use for that purpose at school,” Clayton said.