Tuesday, December 22, 2020; Eudora, KS: The Eudora Schools Foundation (ESF) is pleased to announce it has received a $10,000 LiveWell Douglas County Community Wellness grant.
The grant provides funding for the creation of an outdoor learning and culinary arts center at the Eudora High School (EHS). This area is a new outdoor space on the north side of the building, outside of the Eudora DeSoto Technical Education Center (EDTEC). The large concrete area will include an outdoor classroom shelter and a culinary arts outdoor kitchen.
“As EHS enrollment has continued to increase, the demand for outdoor space and a general outdoor classroom has skyrocketed. With the COVID pandemic, it has also created a high demand for outdoor space to maintain social distancing and take mask breaks. The new outdoor space would allow for students and staff to go outdoors and learn beyond the four walls of the classroom,” said Ron Abel, EHS Principal. “In addition, the space will include an outdoor food prep, cooking, and food service area for our culinary arts classes.”
By creating the EHS Outdoor Learning and Culinary Arts Center, the over 500 EHS students and staff will have ample opportunities to engage in outdoor learning and outdoor breaks, culinary students will be able to increase their outdoor cooking and serving skill sets, and there will be an increase in student and staff time for outdoor STEM and physical activities throughout the day. The community will also benefit with the additional space for picnics and access to green space for play and physical fitness throughout the year.
The Eudora Schools Foundation has worked with the school district for the last three months to begin secure funding for this project. The LiveWell grant will provide the seed money to start this project. In addition, Hamm, Inc, as a community partner, has committed to provide the excavation work, the rock, concrete, and labor for the project.
“We are grateful for the resources and support of Hamm, Inc. and LiveWell Douglas County. They are truly making a difference to support this outdoor classroom expansion at the high school– they are a terrific district partner,” said Shanda Hurla, ESF Executive Director. “We will continue to seek community partners that will help make this project a success. We continue to find that our community is generous in making a difference for our kids.”
The EHS Outdoor Learning and Culinary Arts Center starts construction this week with the completion in the spring if weather permits. The Eudora Schools Foundation and school district is committed to creating this amazing wellness and learning area for not only our EHS students, but also for our community as a whole.
The Eudora Schools Foundation is a nonprofit organization 501(c)(3) that generates resources, builds relationships, and champions public education in Eudora Public Schools. Founded in 2006, the Foundation exists to enhance the quality of education through partnerships with the community. Expenditures are primarily directed toward enhancing classroom instruction and impacting the broadest number of Eudora students.