Texas Farm Bureau awards microscopes to schools through grant

Ten schools across the state received a set of digital classroom microscopes thanks to Texas Farm Bureau (TFB) and Bayer AG.

TFB received funding from Bayer AG, an agricultural sciences company, to support agricultural education through a grant program. Called Scoping Out Ag in the Classroom, it specifically targets science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines in teaching agricultural concepts.

The Scoping out Ag in the Classroom grant program aims to bring agriculture and science together in the classroom.

“We give each teacher who attends our Summer Ag Institute a microscope for classroom use,” Mason said. “It’s really neat for the teacher to have one, but we thought it would be even better for the students to have them. Our hope is they’ll use these to increase agricultural literacy.”

Teachers who previously attended Summer Ag Institute submitted a video explaining why they needed the microscopes and how their classes would use them. Ten out of 22 applications were selected to receive a classroom set of 10 digital microscopes each.

The grantees are:
— Ollie Hart, Abernathy Elementary, Abernathy
— Marsha Hammack, Reagan Elementary/Center for Innovation, Abilene
— Dale Hrabovsky, Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Program, Angleton
— Debbie Hudspeth, Forestburg ISD, Forestburg
— Linda Ball, Fort Stockton Christian Academy, Fort Stockton
— Alicia Young, Williamson County Juvenile Services, Georgetown
— Laura Bow, Happy Elementary, Happy
— Cheryl Murrey, Monday Elementary, Kaufman
— Serina Betts, Chapel Hill Junior High, Mount Pleasant
— Angie Pierce, Sudan Elementary, Sudan

The new digital microscopes are small and easy to use. The sophisticated technology allows students to create video logs or photograph specimens.