Recent high school grad pushes for Ag education mandate

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(KMVT/KSVT) One recent high school graduate wants to make learning about agriculture a requirement to graduate high school.

Anna Peterson proposed the idea of adding a required agriculture science credit to the House Agricultural Affairs Committee on Jan. 30. The credit would be in a class that would cover industry regulations, genetically modified and organic crops, and where your food comes from.

“Coming up through these years of high school, we learn about math,” Peterson told the committee. “We learn about literature, but we were never mandated to learn about something we consume or use on a daily basis, and that's our agriculture products.”

The state’s Future Farmers of America secretary spoke out in support of the proposal at the committee hearing, saying kids nowadays don’t know enough about an industry that’s integral to Idaho.

“Ask those kids where their milk comes from, where their steaks come from,” said Sydney Anderson. “The grocery store. But it's a much longer process than that.”

Members of the committee talked about how excited they were to see how hard she had worked.

“I’m so proud of what you’ve done here,” Rep. Christy Zito said.

Rep. Sally Toone also sits on the committee. She said she supported the idea, but she didn’t think it was realistic for Idaho to implement right now.

“I would love to say every school district in Idaho has an Ag teacher, but that's not true,” she said. “In today's finances of schools, I'm not sure it's realistic to make it a mandate, because there's schools out there that can't do it.”

Toone said in order for this proposal to become a bill a lawmaker has to sponsor it.

She said it’s unlikely it would become a bill in this session.



 
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