Several area agriculture instructors received state recognition by the OAAE (Ohio Association of Agriculture Educators). The OAAE is the state organization of members that provide school-based agricultural education in middle through postsecondary levels. They advocate, provide professional development and work to recruit and retain agricultural educators.

Hannah Everetts, agriculture science instructor at Edon Schools has been named the Outstanding Early Career Teacher Award winner by the OAAE .

Everetts has a program of 75 students studying in the agricultural and environmental sciences pathway. They have conducted fetal pig and sheep heart dissections, monitored chicken embryo development, hatched chicks/ducklings, designed and built hydroponics systems, raised chickens while conducting feed trials, built businesses, job shadowed, extracted DNA from strawberries, conducted mock job interviews, as well as learned about all aspects of the mechanics lab in their shop. She has encouraged her students to take advantage of the many opportunities and awards available in the FFA.

Everetts is in her fifth year of teaching at Edon and involved with local agriculture groups. She has served on the Ohio FFA Camp Board, OAAE Delegate Council, and as a National Ag Teacher Ambassador.Ryan Sell, agriculture science instructor at Archbold Schools has been named the Ideas Unlimited Award Winner by the OAAE. The Ideas Unlimited Award area allows teachers to share a unique lesson plan.

As a part of the Food Science Course’s Meat Science Curriculum, the students participate in a unit on carcass fabrication. It offers a real-world look into the basics of butchering, in this case a hog carcass; but the overall goal is to produce a more educated consumer. Pork is used because of its cost-effectiveness and the size of the carcass allows the program to use standard freezers and refrigerators without needing to invest in any commercial refrigeration.

The unit started in 2014 as a basic sausage-making lab with a meat grinder and slowly evolved into butchering an entire hog carcass. The program now has a sausage stuffer, 4’x 8’ butcher-block work surface, slicer, vacuum sealer, bulk bag taper, band saw and a full array of cutlery and safety equipment. Essentially, when the students walk in the classroom, they have access to a full, small-scale butcher shop.

Fayette agriculture education department has been named the Outstanding Middle/Secondary Agriculture Education Program by the OAAE. Pamela Schultz and Kalley Schaefer are the teachers there. They offer course work that can lead to certification in welding and vet tech/assistant field. They also offer classes from skilled metal fabrication to basic agriculture, food and natural resources. About 89% of the 7-12th grade student population enrolled in an ag class this past year.

Pamela Schultz has been named the Ohio Outstanding Agriculture Teacher Mentor by the OAAE. Pamela teaches agriscience and serves as an FFA advisor at Fayette Schools. Schultz restarted the Fayette program from scratch in 2006 and she has continuously molded the FFA program into what it is today. She has helped 31 members receive their State FFA Degrees and 13 advanced on to their American FFA Degree. She is there to lend a hand, offer advice or to just vent to. She has stood behind students because she sees what they are capable of achieving even when the student might not. Schultz also takes time to be involved in many professional organizations and committees including OAAE, FFA CDEs and FFA Camp. She has served to informally help mentor new teachers in District 1.

Edon Farmers’ Cooperative was named the Outstanding Cooperation Award Recipient by the OAAE. Each year, they bring guest speakers to the business management class and spend time working with students that are interested in grain merchandising, feed rations, hauling grain, etc. They hire agriculture students to give them with experience and provide students with resources to be successful. Each year they train the Edon FFA Grain Merchandising CDE (Career Development Event) team for competition, and encourage students to pursue careers in ag business.

These award applications will be forwarded to Regional IV competition in June. The national convention for the National Association of Agriculture Educators is planned for December in Nashville, Tenn.

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