I am an alumnus of Abraham Lincoln High School from the class of 2017. My interest in the EFS/PHENND program is to see if I can be able to assist with creating a sustainability program at Abraham Lincoln High School and support the teacher & students. Our team consists of Paula Miller, Chandra Graham, and Maria Pishko as the teachers. For us the initial steps of creating the program in our school, we used the 9 core EFS standards to guide what the program should represent.
The way that we tried to recruit students was by using events and initial teacher/student interactions to show what the program is. The Hispanic Heritage event was our first event to try including students by giving an outlet after school to enjoy the green space in school and do activities like tie-dying and just communicating with each other. We would want the students to have a voice and representation of their heritages which it can be acknowledged through these festivals. In my interactions with the teacher team, we created a student survey to get a baseline of what the students understand about sustainability and what interest they have. We received 82 responses and some key information we learned was that the students are interested in Renewable energies and understanding how we treat the environment & people. The way that survey was given out during a pizza party for students that were interested. We used the momentum from this event to interview students that were willing to join the program and explain what we are doing. We most importantly explained that this will be a student-driven process and that the Lincoln team will be here to support them.
The problems that arise after the new year would be from covid that things were becoming more questionable. It was also from standardized testing that the teachers were busy. I was unable to be in person for the current situation due to my class schedule but I have taken a virtual role in supporting the teachers. In my current role, I have been creating emails to the teacher group and potential community partners. A few things that could be in the works are trying to get a mural in our courtyard and having student involvement. Another thing would be using an already made garden to teach students how to grow crops. The community partners that we have been trying to reach are the Mural Arts program and Primex. The mural arts would be great to let students that are more artistic be able to express themselves. The Mural in our school would be in our courtyard so in the current progress it has been to get a connection with possible art programs. Primex is another community partner since we are trying to get soils and seeds for the gardens. It is through our current progress that we feel hopeful for the program and we have an intended first meeting on February 16th after school. We expect after that meeting that we will build the student consensus and voice to further develop the program.