[August 20, 2013]SPRINGFIELD -- Teachers and
students head back for a new school year, ready to learn about
agriculture daily, thanks to a generous gift to fund agriculture
calendars. Representatives from AT&T presented a check for $25,000
to Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom, or IAITC, during Ag Day at
the Illinois State Fair, marking AT&T's second consecutive gift to
the program and another example of the company's efforts to support
the agriculture community in the state of Illinois.
As a result of this generous gift, Illinois Agriculture in the
Classroom will distribute the Illinois Agriculture School Calendar
to more than 25,000 classrooms. This educational tool and IAITC
program staple features a different agriculture theme each month,
often related to the time of year and topics of interest. Daily "ag
facts" keep students engaged in learning about the importance of
agriculture and how it helps put food on their tables. Other
teacher-favorite features are nutrition information, vocabulary
words and suggested reading.
"The Illinois Agriculture Calendar
works seamlessly in conjunction with other IAITC materials," said
Kevin Daugherty, director of education for Illinois Agriculture in
the Classroom. "Students look forward to reading the daily 'ag fact'
on the calendar. In fact, teachers tell us that often students will
remind them that they need to read their ag fact for the day if she
forgets. It's truly a great way to keep agriculture a part of
education every day."
"At AT&T we invest in education to ensure the next generation of
leaders and workers is prepared to meet the challenges of the global
Internet-based economy," said Paul La Schiazza, president of AT&T
Illinois. "Today, we are proud to announce our support for the
Agriculture in the Classroom program. This program helps the next
generation more fully appreciate the benefits of agriculture to the
people and the economy of Illinois."
"We appreciate the commitment AT&T shows to the entire state of
Illinois," said Susan Moore, director of the IAA Foundation. "By
investing in a program like IAITC, urban and rural students alike
benefit from understanding how important our farmers are. We are
thankful to have a continuing partner like AT&T who sees how making
that connection from farm to fork is so vital today, particularly
for the livelihood of our agriculture community."
IAITC has a rich history of being the agriculture education
resource for teachers to use in classrooms. All of its lessons meet
Illinois Learning Standards, and teachers use the program to enhance
their existing curriculum. County coordinators and volunteers form a
network to deliver programs and materials with accurate agriculture
content to teachers and children in all 102 Illinois counties.
Universities and public school systems recognize the IAITC program
as the source for training teachers and educating children about the
importance of agriculture, including the role it plays in providing
healthy food choices to achieve a nutritious diet.
Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom is the top funding priority
Foundation, Illinois Farm Bureau's charitable foundation.
Funding from agribusiness and related industries, state government,
commodity groups and individual donors helps the IAA Foundation
reach its annual goals to raise funds to implement IAITC programming
and provide teaching resources throughout the state of Illinois.