James B. Edwards Elementary Receives Two Grants

JBE students holding lavender, basil, and indigo that they have growing in their greenhouse

James B. Edwards Elementary School (JBE) received a South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control grant for $1,500.

With the supplies provided by the grant award, JBE students at all grade levels will continue to make compost to support the school’s greenhouse projects, the four raised garden beds and to support work in the ‘From Seeds to Shoreline’ Program with the SC Sea Grant Consortium.

From Seeds to Shoreline (S2S) is South Carolina’s only salt marsh restoration program designed for students. Students learn to cultivate and transplant young seedlings of salt marsh grass, which help restore areas of salt marsh.

“Specifically, this environmental endeavor uses cocoa coir instead of peat moss when making our soil/compost because cocoa coir is more sustainable,” said teacher Nancy Platt, who also serves as the school’s Green Team Sponsor.

In addition, the Herb Society of America’s Samull Classroom Herb Garden Grant Committee has selected JBE to receive a grant for $300 to be used towards their herb garden project.

JBE will order herb seeds on a quarterly rotation. Students have made their own compost soil in the greenhouse, so the funds will purchase seeds, trays, gloves, trowels, and hand rakes to help with weeding and planting. Any remaining surplus will go toward the soil components that the students are currently using to make signature JBE super soil.

“Our educational goals of this project are to teach our third through fifth-grade students the history, benefits, and versatility of herbs,” said Platt. “We will explore the origins of common and not so common herbs. Students will experience flavors and smells of all that they grow and will experiment with different recipes. They will discover the many medicinal values specific to various herbs.”

Platt said that throughout this experience, students will be virtually transported to other countries where they will discover how herbs came to America as well as which herbs are indigenous to our country.

“This work fits naturally into our global leadership mission and values,” added Platt. For more information on these grants, email Nancy Platt at nancy_platt@charleston.k12.sc.us.

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