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Yellville Junior Environmental Awareness Group Given Grant for Water Testing
October 2002

Grant received for new equipment at Y-S Middle School
Grant received for new equipment at Y-S Middle School 
The Yellville-Summit Middle School recently received a $4,197 grant from South Shore Foundation at Flippin to purchase new water testing equipment for students working as a Stream Team with Arkansas Game & Fish and with Arkansas WET - which stands for Water Education Team - an activity of the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality. Pictured in their outdoor classroom are (from left) teacher Ann Jones with students Jessica White, Shane Smith, and Blake Jefferson.

About 60 students at the Yellville-Summit Middle School will take part in hands-on learning projects in science this year, using equipment purchased with a South Shore Foundation grant of $4,197. Ann Jones and Neal Gibson, teachers at Yellville-Summit Middle School, applied for the grant. Ms. Jones said the grant will replace water-testing equipment that has been in use for the past five years and will purchase some additional equipment to expand the water testing to additional sites.

The students, who are in a conservation or EAST Lab class, are involved in two statewide projects - Arkansas WET (Water Education Team), which is an activity of the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, and Arkansas Stream Team, a volunteer activity overseen by Arkansas Game & Fish Commission. Students run chemical, physical, and biological tests on Crooked Creek at a site about 100 yards downstream from Kelly's Slab, a continuing project for the past five years. A second group of students has created an outdoor classroom behind the school on the east fork of Shawnee Town Branch. Chemical, physical, and biological testing will be expanded to this site and to selected springs in the area.

Mrs. Jones said, "Students learn best when participating in meaningful hands-on projects."  Her students learn to collect accurate information, then report the information to the statewide projects to monitor area water quality. The outdoor classroom water quality testing will be done monthly during the school year and Crooked Creek testing is done monthly. Springs selected for testing will be tested quarterly, at least, the instructor said. 

South Shore Foundation, the charitable foundation of Northern Arkansas Telephone Company of Flippin, makes grants to nonprofit agencies and communities to further goals of educational advancement, environmental preservation, community betterment and economic development. NATCO President Steven G. Sanders also chairs the board of trustees of the foundation. For more information or to receive a grant application, call 1-800-775-6682.

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