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Sixth Graders Awarded Grant to Fix Erosion Problem on School Grounds

Area on the ANCS middle campus with erosion problems. Image provided by Helen Regnier

Area on the ANCS middle campus with erosion problems. Photo provided by Jake Fuller

By Jake Fuller, Colin McAdams, and Helen Regnier
The sixth graders at Atlanta Neighborhood Charter School (ANCS) were given $500 in grant money by the ANCS PTCA to fix a serious erosion problem at the middle school’s campus in Ormewood Park. Several sixth graders, Jake Fuller, Colin McAdams and Helen Regnier, applied for the grant, because they completed a project about erosion in their math, science, and technology class and realized they might be able to fix a real problem.
“This is Atlanta Neighborhood Charter School at its best. The PTCA Executive Committee was impressed that the students presented their position in a clear and concise manner,” said Anita Downing, PTCA co-president at ANCS Middle School campus. “They recognized an ongoing problem of erosion at the middle school campus and worked diligently with their math and science teachers to come up with a viable solution.”
As part of the class project, each student was given an area on the school grounds that had erosion problems, and was tasked to provide a solution as part of the assignment. That’s when this area was examined, and rendered serious.
The students worked together to finish a plan to fix the erosion. They are planning to slow down the process of erosion by using several erosion control methods they learned in class.
One idea is to use some terracing, which is where the ground is cut to look like stairs. When the terracing is added, they will add flowers and bushes as ground cover. Ground cover is when the roots of the plants hold the dirt together.
Their teachers, Jennifer Dickie, Denise Svenson, and Nilam Trivedi are excited about this opportunity for students to “see their knowledge applied to real-life problem-solving.”  We look forward to increasing hands-on learning through our school gardens and similar projects on the middle campus of ANCS.
The school could use additional help and supplies, because the grant does not cover all materials. For instance, the school could use help from local contractors who could supply fill dirt, plants, and volunteers with green thumbs.
ANCS will have a workday in April to complete the project. The students would really appreciate some help, so gather your supplies and come volunteer.  For more information or to donate time or materials, please contact Denise Svenson at

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