June 2011
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FFA Today: Sardis HS Receives Grants for Greenhouse Project

Sardis High School (SHS) received a double dose of generosity on Oct. 19, 2010.

On behalf of the Coosa Valley Resource Conservation and Development Council, State Sen. Larry Means and State Rep. Jack Page presented a check in the sum $7,000 for the completion of a greenhouse on the SHS campus. The Etowah County Commission also contributed $1,000 on the greenhouse project.


Among those at the dedication ceremony for the greenhouse were Senator Larry Means; Representative Jack Page; Ken Howell, district conservationist with NRCS; and Larry Payne, Etowah County Commission. 

Both local politicians noted that funding for school projects is always a top priority when earmarking monies for their districts.

Coosa Valley Resource Conservation and Development Council representative Eddy Mays pointed out his organization is a nonprofit group that serves 11 counties in East-Central Alabama.

"Our funding comes through state government and grants, and we really want to thank Larry Means and Jack Page for all their support. Our motto is ‘Helping People Help Other People,’ and today is a great example of that," Mays said.

Alabama Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) district conservationist Ken Howell explained the project was a joint effort among Means, Page, the Etowah County Soil and Water Council Conservation District, and the Etowah County Commission.

"Hopefully this project can help make the Sardis community a better place to live," Howell said. "The greenhouse project is a great way to educate our FFA kids as they learn how to grow and maintain plants. It’s just a great partnership we have together."

"We’ve got good people who recognize things when they’re needed," added Etowah County District 3 Commissioner Larry Payne. "We’re just one of the mechanisms making it happen as far as the monetary part of it."

Means said the project was a prime example of local organizations working together.

"This is not some politician’s money. It’s the taxpayers’ money we’re bringing home to the district. To see so many people tickled to death over something like this is really something. It’s truly a blessing."

"It’s a great situation for the Sardis school and community. I’m just grateful to have a small part in expanding kids’ education along with improving the quality of life for the Sardis community," said Page.

SHS agriculture department head Shannon Burns, a 1991 Sardis graduate, wrote the grant leading to the greenhouse project.

Burns said, "I’ve been here for 10 years, and I’ve always wanted a greenhouse on school grounds."

"I think this will open up a lot of opportunities to teach other ag programs, like some aquaculture stuff, and hopefully to fund some FFA events. I’ve got some kids who are really excited about that. The chemistry and biology departments can also use the facility, so it’s really an exciting time for our school and a good thing for everybody."

Reprinted with permission from The Sand Mountain Reporter. Excerpt from a special article posted: Wednesday, October 27, 2010, 7:48 pm.