While most of the Seed for Schools packs go to primary schools, we also have some older kids engaging with the program. The update below has come from Balga Senior High, where students in the Certificate I AgriFoods course are growing spuds.

The start of Term 2 saw the launch of a new collaboration between NM TAFE and Balga Senior High School. Through this initiative, we are delivering Certificate I in AgriFoods Operations to students enrolled in the Balga Engagement Program (BEP). This initiative is supported by the Aboriginal School-based Training (ASBT) program.

Participating students are gaining valuable work skills and knowledge that can provide opportunities for future training or career pathways.

Students will develop their life skills including: growing food, promote healthy eating, recycling, team working, sense of community, enthusiasm for outcomes.

To date, the focus for students has been foundational work safety awareness encompassing: safe lifting, recognising hazards and identifying safety signage. The practical tasks performed so far have been: weeding, composting, garden bed preparation, various planting (seedlings, bulbs and potatoes).

WA Potatoes kindly donated 3 boxes of seed potatoes and fertiliser to our program.

The team had never planted or grown potatoes before so this opportunity enabled students to gain new skills. They all emphasised they really enjoyed the digging component of the activity.

Just over 2 months after planting, the students spotted new growth starting to break through. After the school holiday break, the students were surprised to see all the seed potatoes had sprouted and healthy new growth filling the beds. Students have been maintaining the area, weeding and mounding the soil around each stem. The potato patch has been a great addition to our garden and program. It has given some students a sense of ownership and an understanding they could grow their own food at home.

Gaining valuable work skills and knowledge for future training or career pathways.