Tomales High farm proposed

09/27/2012

The agriculture teacher at Tomales High has a vision for the empty field lying behind the school’s tennis courts: Bill Costanzo sees a livestock barn, a small greenhouse and apple and pear orchards.

The trustees of Shoreline Unified School District, who heard the proposal at their regular meeting last Thursday, have already expanded on his vision—they see the cafeteria serving up the vegetables grown in the greenhouse tended by Mr. Costanzo’s students.

Tomales High has roughly 65 students who participate in Future Farmers of America (FFA), and about half of them go into agriculture-related fields, Mr. Costanzo said. But many have no place to raise animals or grow food; the school lost its greenhouse several years ago when a science classroom was built.

If Mr. Costanzo is awarded the $10,000 grant he’s hoping to apply for from the California department of education—he needs board approval before submitting his application—the school district would need to match those funds. Then, he could imagine the project—greenhouse first, livestock barn second—starting by this
summer.