(916) 686-7709 EXPLORE@egusd.net
The Awards Highlight Academy’s Commitment to Mentor Future Generations of Farmers

ELK GROVE, Calif. – August 14, 2019 – The Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD) commends the Elk Grove High School Agriculture Department for receiving two honors in the category of program leadership by the California Agricultural Teachers’ Association during its annual conference, which was held June 23-27, 2019. Formally known as the Sustainable Agriculture & Green Education Academy (SAGE), the program was recognized as having an “Outstanding Agriculture Program” for its student work-based learning and leadership development opportunities. The SAGE Academy also received an “Overall Outstanding Agriculture Department” award and now qualifies for the National Association of Agricultural Educators award opportunity to be announced in October 2019 in Indianapolis.

The CATA’s objectives are to promote and improve the teaching of agriculture in California and to foster the welfare of those engaged in this work. The SAGE Academy instructors expand those objectives by offering a variety of courses and work-based learning opportunities to encourage its students to lead by example on and off the farm fields and also aims to provide its students with an “Ag family” environment. 

The Elk Grove High School SAGE Academy instructors are Mike Albiani, Courtney Bamert, Amy Erman, Colleen Lawson, Wesley Messer, Sierra Meyers and Shannon Welch. Elated by these top commendations, school principal Dr. Eugene Christmas, III, expressed his pride by saying, “Elk Grove High School is honored that the California Agricultural Teachers’ Association has bestowed these two awards on our School. These are huge honors for our agriculture department, the SAGE Academy, the entire faculty and student body. I am proud of all the support that are community gives to our agriculture program each year. Elk Grove High School remains committed to implementing a high quality educational experience for its students, and these two awards speak to everyone’s dedication toward shaping our future generations of agricultural students.”

Programs applying for the statewide recognition must select their department size as a department with one instructor, with two-to-three instructors or with four or more instructors. In order to be selected as a CATA Outstanding Agriculture Program, programs must meet the following requirements:

  • Agriculture Education Program Overview and Curriculum
  • Industry Partnerships
  • Professional Development Opportunities for Instructors
  • Reference Letters
  • Student Leadership Opportunities
  • Work-based Learning Opportunities

There is one winner in each department size category. The three total winners are then considered to receive the “Overall Outstanding Agriculture Department” award.