Bald Eagle Area SD has implemented a sustainable agriculture school project involving chickens, which was funded by a $5,000 grant from the National Farm to School Network. The projects enriches the curriculum at both the primary and secondary levels.

The eggs came first. Primary students learned about embryology until the chickens hatched in the spring. Then older students maintained the chickens in a barn they built on the high school’s campus. Agriculture teacher Todd Biddle’s workshop was transformed into a state-inspected chicken processing facility where students received training. As part of the curriculum, animal science students properly and humanely processed the chickens under the supervision of representatives from the state Department of Agriculture. The poultry was frozen in the school’s state-certified kitchen and cafeteria.

This fall, the students plan to create a recipe and make soup with corn they have grown and the chicken they processed. They will serve the soup in the school’s cafeteria, and proceeds will help purchase feed for the next batch of chickens, continuing the circle of sustainability.