PLATINUM2022

Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom

Connecting Children to Agriculture

aka VA Agriculture in the Classroom   |   Richmond, VA   |  www.agintheclass.org

Mission

Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom's (AITC) mission is to educate Virginia's children about the importance of agriculture. Annually, over 400,000 children are connected to agriculture through the meaningful experiences and educational resources

Ruling year info

1992

President

Mr. Wayne Pryor

Executive Director

Mrs. Tammy Maxey

Main address

PO Box 27552

Richmond, VA 23261 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

54-1611426

NTEE code info

Elementary, Secondary Ed (B20)

Other Food, Agriculture, and Nutrition N.E.C. (K99)

Agricultural Programs (K20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Professional Development for PK-8 Educators

AITC is an innovative educational program that uses agriculture as a medium to teach math, science, social studies and language arts. AITC provides professional development training workshops, lessons and classroom resources to educators in grades PreK-8 and to pre-service teachers in Virginia's colleges and universities. All programs are provided at no cost to teachers or schools. Educators learn about agriculture and take part in great hands-on lessons like Resource Roundup, Garden in a Glove, Discover an Acre and Funky Fraction Chicken. They also receive great lesson plans and classroom resources like books, videos, Virginia agriculture maps, and much more.

Population(s) Served

Providing Virginia teachers with great lessons and classroom resources is the standard for AITC and one of the reasons for AITC's continued growth and success. Each year AITC develops new lessons, activities and resources for teachers in grades PreK-8. The What is in Barn? engages learners in investigations and hands-on activities involving animals and plants. Participants will learn about the many people involved in the family farm, explore the barnyard with the AITC staff and leave with a basket full of ideas, activities and resources for their students. In addition to the new workshop curriculum, AITC is working on adding an online agriculture map to our website, building a My Virginia Plate unit that combines nutrition and agriculture information for educators and students and developing a new Sprout magazine for students that will also have nutrition information with agriculture facts.

Population(s) Served

The AITC website is key distribution and information site for teachers. The site has more than 175 lesson plans and activities and the lesson plan page is the most accessed page on the site. AITC has recently updated the site with a searchable lesson plan database making it more user friendly and efficient. New lessons, activities, videos and resources are added through out the year to provide teachers with new and up to date information.

Bi-annually, Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom distributes an education newsletter to every public and most private elementary schools in Virginia. Each newsletter has a different feature. Past features have included peanuts, dairy, corn, seasons on the farm, and many more. Each newsletter edition is packed with lessons, fun facts, classroom activities and more.

Population(s) Served

The purpose of the Teacher of the Year award is to recognize a Virginia teacher for his/her excellent job in incorporating agriculture into his/her core curriculum. Recognizing that agriculture forms the backbone for our daily lives, AITC celebrates those teachers who effectively integrate agriculture into their classrooms.

Population(s) Served

The Agriculture in the Classroom Mini Grant Program was created to support schools and organizations who strive to help students understand the source of their food and fiber and to help Virginia's school children gain a greater knowledge and appreciation of agriculture. Qualifying projects will provide students with hands-on, experiential learning about agriculture.

Population(s) Served

Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom partners with volunteers to connect children to agriculture at fairs and community events. To further assist volunteers in their outreach efforts, we created a resource room full of educational banners and handouts that service a variety of outreach efforts. Banners cover an array of topics including agricultural careers, animals on the farm, healthy food choices, and agricultural commodities. Volunteers can also request an assortment of place-mats, bulletins, brochures, "Diggin It" kids' pages, activity pages, and pencils. Additionally, our website features a volunteer tab with activity suggestions for a variety of age ranges and topics.

Population(s) Served

Our direct-to-student program delivers high energy lessons that emphasize STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) relevant to the agricultural industry. Delivered by professional presenters in school and after-school settings, the program bridges the agricultural education gap in Virginia's metropolitan and urban areas by establishing partnerships with urban schools and community-based children's programs. Each year, thousands of urban students experience the exciting science and technology utilized in Virginia agriculture through this program.

Population(s) Served

Our annual Agriculture Literacy Week event inspires volunteers from across the Commonwealth to read a selected book to elementary students. Copies of agriculturally relevant books are then given to classrooms to enjoy throughout the year. The event connects children to a farmer or volunteer who is engaged in an agriculture-related career. Thanks to our strong community of volunteers, annually nearly 50,000 children are exposed to the great story of agriculture.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of agriculture-themed 'Book of the Year', read and gifted to classrooms during Ag Literacy Week in March 2022.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Agricultural Literacy Week

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Every year during Agriculture Literacy Week in month of March, our volunteers purchase our 'Book of the Year' to read and gift to classrooms all throughout Virginia.

Number of children connected to agriculture annually

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Student Outreach

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

A quick pivot in how we delivered programs during the early stages of COVID-19, allowed us to continue to grow our impact by relying on virtual and online methods of outreach to reach children.

Number of children impacted by initiatives led by AITC's regional coordinators in Northern Virginia and Southwest Virginia

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Curriculum Development/Classroom Resources

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

After hiring a program coordinator in Northern Virginia and Southwestern Virginia, AITC increased the ability to directly connect children to agriculture through these roles.

Number of educators that received a free Back to School, STEM, or Seed Survivor resource kit

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Curriculum Development/Classroom Resources

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Educators can request free resource-kits during different times throughout the year.

Number of students impacted from a free Back to School, STEM, or Seed Survivor resource kit

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Curriculum Development/Classroom Resources

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We did not directly calculate the number of children reached through our free resource give away in 2020 and 2019.

Number of 'Classroom Grants' awarded

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

School Grants

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of Virginia localities awarded a 'Classroom Grant'

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

School Grants

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

The 62 'Classroom Grants' awarded are in 42 different localities throughout Virginia.

Number of children that experienced a hands-on agricultural learning opportunity through activities funded by 'Classroom Grants'

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

School Grants

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our 'Classroom Grants' connected over 20,000 children to agriculture through first-hand experiences and engaging activities.

Number of professional development trainings conducted

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Professional Development for PK-8 Educators

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of educators participated in professional development trainings

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Professional Development for PK-8 Educators

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Goal 1: Provide educators with necessary tools and resources to incorporate
agricultural concepts into schools connecting students with the role of agriculture
in the environment, technology, food systems, plant and animal systems and
related careers.

Goal 2: Partner with volunteer and agricultural organizations to provide appropriate
direct-to-child tools and resources to create unique agricultural experiences in their
communities and throughout the state.

Goal 3: Promote the Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom brand to increase program
awareness, use and recognition of program initiatives.

Goal 1 | Benchmark 1: Educators are provided with agricultural materials and knowledge through professional development opportunities directly and indirectly.

Goal 1 | Benchmark 2: Educators and their students are provided with a hands-on connection to agriculture through AITC’s education grant program. Grants will include agricultural experiences, garden, and STEM initiatives.

Goal 1 | Benchmark 3: Educators are provided with agriculturally rich materials that are easily incorporated into core curriculum areas.

Goal 2 | Benchmark 1: Serve as consultant with volunteers and agricultural partners to create solutions for on-sight learning opportunities at special events and agriculture venues.

Goal 2 | Benchmark 2: Develop and promote Agriculture Literacy Week.

Goal 2 | Benchmark 3: Create, curate and disseminate loanable and consumable resources to volunteers upon
request for fairs and ag days containing take home ag related messaging items.

Goal 2 | Benchmark 4: Expand the impact of AITC through the Ambassador program.

Goal 3 | Benchmark 1: Market program initiatives and available resources to education entities, volunteer groups and agriculture partner organization.

Goal 3 | Benchmark 2: Engage stakeholders through social media outlets and press.

Goal 3 | Benchmark 3: Highlight exemplary educators and
longtime program users.

Goal 1
Benchmark 1 | Evaluations:
1. 50,000 children are impacted through their educators’ attendance at professional development events.
2. Educators are provided with opportunities for hands-on agricultural exploration at partner
Benchmark 2 | Evaluations:
1. 100 grants are provided to educators impacting 75,000 PK-12 children.
Benchmark 3 | Evaluations:
1. All Virginia elementary schools are provided quarterly agriculture related content and resources through print
or e-newsletters.
2. New and revised curriculum is disseminated including new garden curriculum and Ag 24/7 themed resources.
3. 25,000 educators are connected to resources, creating a potential for 100,000 children provided with accurate agriculture content.
4. Resources are requested by educators throughout the year through special seasonal programs such as Back-to-School CARE kits.

Goal 2
Benchmark 1 | Evaluations
1. New avenues of impact are identified and explored with agriculture partners such as 4-H, FFA and Farm to School.
2. Regional HUBs identify and grow volunteer and partner opportunities in targeting areas connecting with 70,000 children.
3. A pilot program of agriculture resources appropriate for agritourism, festivals and fairs is researched and tested with connections of relevant resources to 50,000 children.
Benchmark 2 | Evaluations
1. 80,000 children are read to and provided with agricultural information during the event.
Benchmark 3 | Evaluations
1. Volunteers are engaged and empowered by participating in planning initiatives to create new or plan use of existing AITC toolkit resources.
2. Promote virtual resources to provide an awareness regarding careers and consumer needs and environment.
3. AITC materials are used at 100 events impacting 100,000 children.
Benchmark 4 | Evaluations
1. Ambassadors are provided with quarterly training, activities and materials.
2. Add ambassadors in high need areas and targeted HUBs.
3. Obtain results of ambassador initiated activity quarterly with a goal of 100 ambassadors connecting with 25,000 children.

Goal 3
Benchmark 1 | Evaluations
1. Initiative and execute program awareness campaign statewide and regional emphasis.
2. Create marketing materials to elicit responses from educators, partners and funders.
3. Create regionally specific marketing materials specific to regional HUB targets.
4. Increase AITC request for programming by 25% statewide and 50% in regional target HUBs.
Benchmark 2 | Evaluations
1. Average 2 education posts per week.
2. Increase average post engagement by 5%.
3. Partner with internal and external press and media for AITC calls to actions and announcement such as grant awards and ag literacy week.
Benchmark 3 | Evaluations
1. Debut a “Master AITC Educator” program for long time users of the program to serve as regional leaders and provide programmatic feedback.
2.Increase applications for Teacher of the Year by 10%.
3. Spotlight on grant recipients sharing grant outcomes.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Training educators and educating children through meaningful engagement and educational resources.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees, Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To inform the development of new programs/projects,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    Our staff, Our board,

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, We don’t have the right technology to collect and aggregate feedback efficiently, The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome,

Financials

Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom

Board of directors
as of 06/27/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mrs. Rose Jeter

Virginia Tech

Term: 2021 - 2023


Board co-chair

Mrs. Diane Fowlkes

Colonial Farm Credit

Term: 2021 - 2023

Wayne Pryor

Virginia Farm Bureau Federation

Rose Jeter

Homestead Creamery

David Moore

Retired, Virginia Cooperative Extension

Diane Fowlkes

Colonial Farm Credit

Kyley Clevenger

Farm Credit Knowledge Center

Susan Gaston

The Gaston Group, LLC

Cora Gnegy

Giles County Marketing Director

Bom Harris

Old Dominion Veterinary Services

Bill Henley

Montague Farms, Inc.

Faye Hundley

Virginia Farm Bureau Women's Leadership Program Chair

James Jennings

JF Leaf, Ltd.

Sarah Large

Cherry Hill Farm

Jessica Pittman

Louisa County Public Schools

Trevor Simmons

Hanover County Public Schools

Ian Batt

Atlantic Union Bank

Basil Gooden

USDA Rural Development

Justin Canada

James River Equipment

LaVetta Nutter

Virginia Department of Education

Bethany Osborne

Target

Tyler Cockerham

Mid-Atlantic Sales Manager

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 6/27/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

No data

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

No data

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 06/27/2022

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
Policies and processes
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.