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Division of Wildlife Dedicates 200th WILD School Site

FAYETTEVILLE, Ohio – Fayetteville Elementary School was recently dedicated as an official WILD School Site, the 200th site in Ohio and first in Brown County, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.

Projects implemented at Fayetteville Elementary Learning Garden include space for pollinators, a rain barrel, a composting bin, and native tree plantings. These efforts provide the essential components wildlife need to survive, which are food, water, shelter, and space. The primary purpose is to teach students about the natural world. Such projects bring learning to life by connecting children to the outside world and teaching everyday subjects through a specially designed curriculum.

“I’m happy to see the WILD School Sites program take root in 200 schools across Ohio,” said Division of Wildlife Chief Kendra Wecker. “This powerful program teaches the next generation of conservationists by incorporating natural resources into learning from a young age. I look forward to seeing the beneficiaries of this program continue to grow.”

“I want to provide quality outdoor learning opportunities for every child at our school,” said Fayetteville Elementary science teacher Mendy Hamilton, who was instrumental in completing the garden project. The project was supported by fellow teachers, students, school administrators, and volunteers. Technical support and donations came from the Brown County Master Gardeners, Brown County Beekeepers Association, Brown County Soil and Water Conservation District, as well as local businesses and nurseries.

The WILD School Sites program, administered in Ohio by the Division of Wildlife, is considered an action extension of the national Project WILD program. Any educational property used by students, educators, and the local community as a place to learn about and benefit from wildlife and the environment can be certified. The sites function within the premise that every school, regardless of size and location, can provide outdoor educational opportunities that can and should be part of an integrated environmental education program. WILD School Sites that demonstrate program development and site enhancement consistent with the premises outlined in this program are eligible for certification as an official Ohio WILD School Site. Learn more at wildohio.gov. 

The mission of the Division of Wildlife is to conserve and improve fish and wildlife resources and their habitats for sustainable use and appreciation by all. Visit wildohio.gov to find out more.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.