D-49 students create outdoor learning center for future landscaping class

PEYTON, Colo. (KKTV) - On Friday morning, students from District 49 at Falcon High School, along with landscaping experts, worked to create a new outdoor learning laboratory.

It's all part of a curriculum that is expected to begin next school year. The purpose of the project is to create open-air classrooms for landscaping classes, preparing students to begin their landscape career immediately following graduation.

"I realize not every student is going to go to college, and there are students out there who do you go to college and incur huge amounts of financial aid, financial debt to live in mom and dad's basement," said agriculture teacher, Dave Kranz. "Here, we have a great opportunity for students to get outside, get in, get their hands dirty and realize that a good hard day's work can actually pay really well."

The materials and labor are all made possible by donations, totaling about $47,000.

About 10 students and 25 landscape professionals helped with the project. Throughout the day, four irrigation systems will be installed, helping students learn installation, repair and water management technologies. A large garden will also be planted, along with a 400 sq. ft. area for hardscapes.

"I honestly love it," said 10th grader, Amanda Brandt. "I've been working in gardens and all that my whole life, most of my life anyways, and we're just learning how to work with plants."

The project was made possible by The Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado, which partners with high schools in Colorado each year around Earth Day to help with landscaping programs.