Typically at this time of year, the greenhouse at Saugeen District Senior School (SDSS) is thriving and there are many activities and initiatives that are underway.
For example, in April we host our Young Growers event and in May we begin our plant sales and complete our partnership work with various long-term care facilities and community projects. Sadly the COVID19 pandemic has impacted our ability to provide the same great services to the Saugeen Shores community as we have in past years.
We have lost approximately 60% of our plant material this year, and we are unsure about the long-term effects on the remaining plants so we have decided to cancel the plant sale.
We appreciate all the community support for the greenhouse program. In addition, we would like to announce that there are significant changes coming to the greenhouse in the future.
Keith Day has been the greenhouse teacher for the past 17 years. His work in the greenhouse supporting students and working with the community has been outstanding. He is a committed, professional educator who has positively impacted the lives of so many with his work in the greenhouse. At this time, Keith has made a difficult decision to step away from the greenhouse to explore other opportunities at SDSS.
The greenhouse program will continue to operate at SDSS. We are in the process of looking for a new teacher for this valuable program and are interested in seeing what the future holds for the greenhouse. We wish Mr. Day all the best in his next adventure and appreciate his tireless effort in making the greenhouse program amazing! He will be missed in the greenhouse.
Finally, the greenhouse is an aging facility that has been attached to SDSS for the past 44 years. We are working with Bluewater District School Board facilities staff to create a long-term maintenance plan. There is no targeted Ministry funding for this type of facility so we will need to be creative about how we continue to support the necessary ongoing repairs and maintenance. Our top priority is, of course, the safety and wellbeing of everyone involved in the program.
In conclusion, SDSS would like to thank the community of Saugeen Shores for their ongoing support of the SDSS greenhouse. There are many incredible long-standing partners who have been vital to the success of this unique and valuable program and we are so appreciative for all their contributions.