On May 1, Jefferson Independent School District was awarded a $49,752 grant from Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for the Pollinator Pals project. It will provide hands-on approaches to increase conservation stewardship through native plant seed collection, greenhouse propagation of seedling plugs, and installation of Monarch Butterfly and other pollinator habitat at Caddo Lake State Park and Wildlife Management Area (WMA) as well as at campus gardens and other selected areas.
Vanessa Neace, TPWD Wildlife Biologist for the WMA, is a critical partner since she maintains the environmental integrity of the WMA and keeps a watchful eye on everything that comes and goes.
The responsible TPWD grant program is called CO-OP for Community Outdoor Outreach Program. The grants help fund community-based youth and family outdoors-oriented programs and activities like camping, hiking, kayaking, and service project for which Pollinator Pals qualifies. This and many more CO-OP Grant sponsored programs will explore the best of outdoor Texas from the Canyons of Caprock, to the Mysteries of Caddo Lake. All along the way, participants will discover why life is better outside.
CO-OP was funded by TPWD in 1996 to help introduce underserved populations to environmental education, conservation and outdoor education programs. Collins Academy’s Dr. Marnie Erin researched the grant opportunity, presented ideas to JISD Administration including the Curriculum Director Lynn Fratangelo, High School Principal Mike Walker, Junior High Principal Clint Coyne, Elementary Principal McGill, and Primary Campus Principal Lindsey Whitaker; and wrote and submitted the proposal.
Collins Academy looks forward to working closely with JISD at all campuses to help deliver extraordinary learning and increased conservation stewardship to all its students.