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Greenhouse field trip teaches healthy eating tips to TUSD students

Posted at 3:53 PM, Oct 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-27 21:32:11-04
In the last six years, Tucson Unified School Department has shut down 14 different schools because of budget cuts and low attendance. Here is a map of all the schools along with the dates they were closed and what has happened to them since.

Thursday evening, Howenstine High School unveiled a field trip station on their property. 

From farm to school, TUSD students are in for a treat come November as the high school was revitalized.
Shirley Sokol, Food Service director, says this will be a great learning experience for students. 
Adding, "we will bring classes through the field trip station. They'll review videos of aqua and hydroponics, and we will have interactive activities."
The field trips will consist of about 90 students, and they will be able to taste the fresh food. 
Sokol says, "if we give them a variety of sample of fresh produce and introduce new fruits and vegetables to them, they will learn how tasty they are."
After the food test, they will tour the greenhouse where the leafy greens are grown. The greenhouse saves about 90 percent of water. 
Chaz Shelton, Co-founder and CEO of Merchant's Garden says this allows children to see where their food is produced and engage in food cultivation.  Adding, "with that we hope for them to take ownership. Love the food that they eat and really want that healthy food."
The program will provide nutrition and agriculture education to students at an early age. 
"Food consumption behavior begins at elementary and middle school where you're really understanding your body and that's why we're excited," says Shelton. 
Shelton adds that this program solves the problem of what to do with the closed down schools by using the property and educating students with it.
There are 20 field trips set up through May to provide healthy eating to students.