The Ag in the Classroom has been seen by many as a successful ag literacy program that provides teachers tools they need to help students understand where, and how, their food is produced. In Montana, ag groups have come together to create the Montana Ag in the Classroom (MAITC) Foundation.
The new public-private partnership will be governed by a board of representatives from each of the founding partners. The foundation was formed as the Montana Farmer’s Union, the Montana Farm Bureau Federation, the Office of Public Instruction and the Montana Department of Agriculture came together.
In making the announcement, Alan Merrill, president of Montana Farmer’s Union, noted that the organization supports youth education programs. “We are proud to be a founding member of the Montana Ag in the Classroom Foundation. This partnership with MAITC will help further the mission of teaching youth about agriculture in a fun and innovative way.”
Rikki Swant, Montana Farm Bureau Federation, noted that the organization is glad to be “part of the cohesive effort to revive the Montana Ag in the Classroom program. Montana students are future consumers — and essentially, the future of agriculture. It’s important to provide Montana’s teachers with accurate agriculture literacy materials and information in order to preserve our agricultural heritage and support our state’s No. 1 industry.”
Knowledgeable, proud students
Adds Elsie Arntzen, superintendent of public instruction: “It has been a priority of the Office of Public Instruction to ensure that Montana students are knowledgeable and proud of our agricultural industry. I look forward to building strong partnerships with our state’s ag leaders to promote agriculture in classrooms and expand ag career opportunities for Montana students.”
The MAITC program works to provide educational opportunities to discover agriculture’s many benefits for both today and tomorrow. It does this by providing teachers with timely, accurate and integrated standards-based curriculum on Montana agriculture through “hands-on, minds-on” activities encouraging critical thinking about the role of agriculture in tomorrow’s world. Learn more at Montana's Ag in the Classroom webpage.