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Bronx, NY: Community Garden Club in NY Public School

  • Subject: [cg] Bronx, NY: Community Garden Club in NY Public School
  • From: Adam36055@aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 14 Apr 2005 09:06:33 EDT


This note from Aresh and the "More Gardens!" group, now mostly active in the 
Bronx, gives an indication of some of the new work they've been doing since 
the Melrose Garden consolidations.  
"More Gardens!" is doing a school garden. 

NYC has not been a great place for school gardens, though we have a few good 
ones. The ones that have worked have had community garden parents who have put 
in the lion's share of the work.  My hands were involved with the old 
Dome/Oasis garden on W. 84th Street, before that got bulldozed, which was next to my 
son's old elementary school, the Anderson program at PS 9. I worked nights at 
the time, so working with kids on starting seeds in classrooms and then 
planting them, labeling them and getting them in the ground - making sure they were 
watered over the summer so they could see "how my plant is doing," in the Fall 
was time-consuming, often frustrating work. The connections between science, 
botany, ecology, etc were clear - the problems were time, teacher and class 
schedules and getting buy-in from school administrators, looking to cover their 
fannies under the "test scores," regime. 

Despite the fact that both the NY and Brooklyn Botanical Gardens have great 
outreach arms, our public school system has looked at these programs, said, 
"that's nice," and moved on. 
The  combination of  strict union custodial rules, a bureaucratic system 
designed to maintain a system instead of educate,  and a change in NYC 
organizational structures - from the old Board of Education to the NYC Dept of Education, 
have made non-quantifiable, non-exam orientated"frills," like school gardens  
hard to get off the ground. 

But Aresh, and "More Gardens!" are sort of like the bumble bee that 
aerodynamically shouldn't fly, but does. So we'll see how this goes. Goodness knows, 
the kids really need this. 

Great luck, Aresh!

Adam Honigman
Clinton Community Garden

> Friends! Parents! Kids! Teachers! 
> Saturday April 16th 
> >From 11a.m.- 4:00p.m. 
> You Are Invited to: 
> Community Garden Club Day! 
> C.I.S. 303 is 
> planting a community garden!!! 
> WHERE: 1700 Macombs Road, at 176th Street side 
> 4 train to 176th Street stop. 
> Go to 176h street and take a right/West Uphill by Steps all the way to the 
> McCombs Street corner. 
> WHAT: Come Join in the Fun! Free for everyone! 
> We need your help making beds and planting herbs and vegetables. 
> All tools and refreshments are provided. 
> (Please bring food for an afternoon picnic) 

The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org

To post an e-mail to the list:  community_garden@mallorn.com

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