CLOVERDALE-- It was a routine meeting for the Cloverdale School Board on Monday evening. The board not only assessed routine matters but also heard updates from the Cloverdale FFA Chapter.
The Cloverdale FFA chapter President Cameron Mann and Vice President Katie Arnold made a short presentation to the board discussing the chapter's upcoming events as well as recent achievements.
Mann and Arnold started their presentation by talking about the 84th National FFA Convention they attended as a chapter in Indianapolis. The two both competed in the national competition.
Arnold competed in the National FFA Science Fair after winning her state contest this past June. Her science fair project was in the zoology division, where she studied how different types of music affect fish activity.
Mann was one of 45 participants in the National FFA Extemporaneous Public Speaking Career Development event. She was awarded a bronze emblem during the competition. The top four individuals received scholarships to further their education at a post-secondary institution of their choice.
The FFA members asked the board for its support during its FFA Chapter Challenge sponsored by Monsanto. During this challenge FFA members must earn support from agriculturalists in their community. By doing so, the chapter has a chance to earn money.
"We earn money from networking with local farmers," said Mann. "Currently we are eighth in the nation."
If the chapter places among the top 200, it will receive at least $1,000 from FFA to help pay for items and activities throughout the year. The Cloverdale chapter is hoping to use this money to buy new member jackets.
To help the chapter out one must visit www.FFAChapterChallenge.com and have everyone involved with one's agricultural production vote using their own email address.
The two also talked about their recent meat and dairy judging food contests, which the chapter learned how to identify defects in meats and dairy. The chapter also learned how to identify different cuts of lamb, pork and beef as well as the amount of fat contained in each.
As with most high schools in the area, many of the Cloverdale FFA members are choosing to take dual-credit courses. There are two courses currently being offered through Purdue University that are on the subjects of animals and plants.
The cost for the courses are $25 per credit hour and in order to take a course the participant must be in within the top 50 percent of their class as well as have one year of both biology and chemistry under their belt.
The board also approved its school calendar for the upcoming 2012-13 school year. Cloverdale, like most schools in the area, is moving toward a balanced calendar, but isn't ready to fully commit just yet.
"Most dates coincide with other area schools," said Superintendent Carrie Milner.
The students will begin school on Aug. 13, and unlike the Greencastle School Corporation, will only receive two days off school for Fall Break, as opposed to a week off.