GREEN-FINGERED children have scooped top awards for their “blooming” marvellous school gardens.
St John’s CE Primary Academy in Brighouse has reached the top level 5 of the Royal Horticultural Society(RHS) Campaign for School Gardening.
And Ravenshall, a special school in Ravensthorpe, has achieved a level 4 in the Sharing Best Practice category.
The RHS presented Ravenshall pupils with £250 worth of National Garden gift vouchers to celebrate success in their garden.
And the school was also given three stone planters for taking part in a special RHS event to encourage parents to get growing too.
The students have planted the containers they won with a selection of evergreen foliage plants, grasses, and bedding plants and displayed them at the school’s entrance on Ravensthorpe Road.
Headteacher Jeanette Tate said: “This is a fantastic prize, which will enhance the front of school and advertise the excellent horticultural work being carried out in school”.
Sarah-Jane Mason, an RHS regional advisor, said: “I have been working with Ravenshall School as part of an RHS Special Educational Needs Project, monitoring the numerous beneficial effects gardening can have on pupils and staff.
“I really enjoy my visits to Ravenshall, teaching children and staff the skills needed to grow fruit and vegetables in the allotment and greenhouse quad gardens.
“The staff are very enthusiastic about horticulture and the majority of classes undertake some growing activities through the year. I am so pleased that the school has won these prizes for the really great practical horticultural work they carry out.”
St John’s, on Towngate in Brighouse, has been presented with a plaque, certificate and a pear tree after being recognised for their gardening success.
St John’s school volunteer, Ken Johnson, said: “In the last three years we have come such a long way turning the school garden into a fun learning environment while incorporating it into the curriculum as much as possible.
“We wanted to develop it into a resource where children could plant vegetables from seed, harvest them and then eat them. It’s been a huge success and the children love it.
“We have a perennial border, an alpine area, a pond with fish and frogs and we grow plants, fruit and vegetables in a number of raised beds.
“Each class has one raised bed each, and are responsible for it, so the children learn about things like taking ownership and team-work, as well as gardening. In fact, some of the older children learn about business and enterprise by growing produce and selling them at the plant fair. It’s only a small amount of space but we get a tremendous amount out of it.”