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Urban agriculture education makes national news.

"City Kids Take to Studying Agriculture," read the headline of a January Associated Press (AP) news story. The story was picked up by several national publications and also appeared on

Quoted in the article was Thomas Scott, principal at Saul High School for Agricultural Sciences in Philadelphia, who told the news organization that what they are really trying to do at his school is teach students skills "so that they can apply them to science or any field they want to go into."

Becky Meyer, director of the Agricultural and Food Sciences Academy in Little Canada, Minnesota, notes that, "There is a need for people who are agriculture literate," and adds that, at her school, they are teaching students about the science, business and technology of agriculture.

Other urban agriculture programs featured in the story are the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences, which a year ago had 1,250 applicants for the 150 spots in the freshman class, and the Natural Science Technology Center in Toledo, where some of the students have worked during summers on the grounds crew with the Toledo Mud Hens baseball team or at golf courses.

The AP story also quoted the National FFA Organization's Bill Stagg, who explains that the organization's membership of 476,000 students is the highest in 22 years and adds that much of that growth has come from urban schools.

According to the AP, "Educators note that agriculture classes are heavy on science and math and much more rigorous than many students expect."

The Associated Press Web site is, and the article appeared on at urban.agriculture.ap/index.html.
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Title Annotation:at high school level
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2005
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