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Area school awarded $10K for STEM program | KRVN Radio

Area school awarded $10K for STEM program

Area school awarded $10K for STEM program
Students Blake Ysac, from left, Isaac Olsen and Jacob Parsons, at Banner County School put together a drone. Courtesy Photo

Banner County School is among five Nebraska schools and others across the U.S. to receive a grant award from the Bayer Fund America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education STEM program. 

The school will receive $10,000 to enhance their STEM program Optional Enrichment Fridays.

Nancy Olsen math teacher at Banner County School attended a workshop on drones and decided they would be a good investment for the students and school. Olsen found a company, which had a curriculum with drones. 

“The students will make a drone and learn all the systems and then fly the drones,” Olsen said.  

The students have little drones. They are learning to fly indoors before they take their bigger drone outside. 

Olsen has also had speakers from MC Schaff and Associates, and local farmers visit and talk about how they use drones in their work. 

Banner County School Superintendent Evelyn Browne applied for the grant distributed by the Bayer fund. One of the judges was Nebraska Wheat Board Executive Director, Royce Schaneman, while helped select the winners, he didn’t look at any of the ones from Nebraska. 

“I got to view grants from all across the country,” Schaneman said. “We had some unique ones, where students were raising their own beef and then harvesting to use in the school cafeteria.” 

Banner Schools will eventually purchase different drones, as the smaller ones are not programmable. For some of the future activities, Olsen has planned they will need programmable drones.

The class Option Enrichment Fridays have six students of different grade levels. 

While not all the grants dealt directly with agriculture, they all had to do with technology. Something Schanaman said is very commonplace in today’s agriculture.

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