RUTHERFORD, Calif., May 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Beaulieu Vineyard (BV) and Calistoga Elementary School (CES) have developed the first entrepreneurial program to educate elementary school students about the local business community in Napa Valley. The program, which kicked off at the start of the 1998 school year, is directed to the 4th, 5th, and 6th grades and will underscore an agricultural education with an emphasis on teaching responsibility and "real world" experience. Already proven successful, the partnership has inspired similar programs in the industry. "Partnerships between public schools and the agricultural community, such as the program between Beaulieu Vineyard and Calistoga Elementary School, increase agricultural awareness and expand career development in California," said Delaine Eastin, California State Superintendent of Public Instruction. (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/19990504/HSTU156 ) BV's donation of a half acre vineyard is projected to yield an estimated 2.5 tons of grapes with a value of $2018 a ton, or $5045 in total. Students who participate in this curriculum will be responsible for reporting on the pruning, spring growth, flowering and harvesting of their adoptive vineyard. They will also track the growing season financially by paying the various labor and equipment costs that are incurred throughout the year and will reinvest the profits from the harvest into their school. "BV is proud to instill practical values by lending its 100 year expertise in farming grapes," said Jeffrey Stambor, winemaker of Beaulieu Vineyard. "Our partnership with CES is not merely a donation, it is a collaboration to involve and educate the children about the grape industry that is so vital to the local economy." "Math, reading, science, history, and social science are just a few areas of the curriculum where connections to agriculture can be made," said Eastin. "While our emphasis is still on basics, there are things which schools can do to strengthen students' understanding of agriculture and its fundamental importance to us. School garden projects and other programs linking agriculture, nutrition, natural resources, science, and other subject areas provide a new and exciting way for students to connect education with issues that will impact their lives." CES students are expected to cover grape-related studies including soils, botany, climate/weather, microbiology, food preservation, and grape products/by-products. At the close of the 1999 growing season, CES students will produce a book to include photography, reproductions of sketches and watercolors, along with student essays, poetry and interviews with BV grape growers. Students in the program as well as their teachers, school principal, and California State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Delaine Eastin, are immediately available for interviews. Color and black and white photographs of students taken in their adoptive vineyard are available upon request.
SOURCE Beaulieu Vineyard