California Law Supports School Gardens

By Charlie Nardozzi

The National Gardening Association has been supporting and promoting school gardens for more than 30 years. We recognize that school gardens help kids in many ways. Children who have been through a school gardening program do better academically, develop better social skills and healthy eating habits, and have a better appreciation for the environment. Fortunately, influential people, such as California's Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, are starting to agree with us.

Schwarzenegger recently signed into law a bill to promote healthy eating for kids and to fight obesity. The bill offers grants and staff support to develop and maintain instructional gardens at California schools. "School gardens create opportunities for children to learn to make healthier food choices and teach fundamental concepts about nutrition and obesity prevention," says Schwarzenegger.

This bill encourages schools to apply to the superintendent of public instruction for a three-year grant in order to develop and maintain an instructional garden program.

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