Farmers can nominate schools for funds

For the second consecutive year, America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund, will give Illinois farmers the opportunity to enhance math and science programs in their communities. Now until April 15, farmers can nominate a local public school district to compete for a merit-based grant of up to $25,000. Administrators of nominated districts may then submit grant applications through April 30.

The America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education program is part of a broad commitment by the Monsanto Fund to highlight the important contributions farmers make every day to society.  Following a successful pilot in Minnesota and Illinois, America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education debuted nationally last year, awarding $2.3 million to school districts coast to coast.

“We believe engaging rural youth in their math and science studies lays the foundation for a bright future,” said Deborah Patterson, Monsanto Fund president. “This generation is the future of agriculture, and funding from the Grow Rural Education program helps ensure they are ready to be the next great leaders.”

Eligible farmers can nominate their favorite public school district by visiting www.growruraleducation.com and following the “Nominate Now” link on the top left corner of the page. Farmers can also nominate a school district by calling 1-877-267-3332.

In 2012, Illinois school districts received a total of $140,000 to enhance math and science curricula. Indian Creek District #425 was among the districts to receive grants; it received $10,000.

Grants will be awarded based on merit, need and community support. The America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education Advisory Council, a group of 30 farmer leaders from across the country, will select the winning grant applications. Advisory Council members were selected based on their passion for agriculture and education, as well as experience in rural school districts.

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