The Gleason FFA Chapter is hard at work this school year with concentration on events that promote career and leadership development opportunities for students.
This past fall, the group participated in the Conduct of Chapter Meeting as well as the Horse Evaluation Career Development Event. Also referred to as the Horse Judging competition, the event promotes the study and interest in equine science, selection, care, management, and production through the agricultural education curriculum. Participants applied the knowledge and critical thinking skills alongside practical application to evaluate, make decisions, and justify them on conformation traits and performance of horses.
The group is also involved in FFA’s PLOW [Passing Literacy Onward] Program, which is an organized effort to promote the excitement and improvement of literacy in agricultural education programs in Tennessee. Through objectives and various initiatives, Gleason FFA students act as mentors to younger students to promote reading literacy and comprehension in tandem with many of the state’s current literacy efforts and regular reading instruction.
Students support the school in many other ways through the unique skills they’ve learned through FFA. They constructed a cornhole board for the Gleason School Fall Festival and worked to repair various equipment in the school. The team also built a bookcase as part of the PLOW project to present to a teacher for FFA week.
When baby chicks arrive to 2nd and 4th grade classrooms, as part of the Chick Hatching Project, sponsored by Weakley County Farm Bureau Women, Gleason’s FFA group is set to read books about chickens to their young peers. The club will also donate the books to the library in each class.
The spring season is scheduled to be busy for the group. Students will be traveling to represent Gleason School at the State Convention that will be held in Gatlinburg on March 19. Preparation is underway for many regional career development event competitions. Students involved in the Upper and Lower Skills event will compete in various areas to include arc welding, differential leveling, electricity, truss assembly, plumbing, small engine identification, electrical wiring, and stud assembly. Additionally, club members are planning to participate in a Forestry career development event, Poultry Evaluation, and a fishing tournament.
Gleason FFA Advisor Archie Rich said that he’s most proud of the student’s hard work.
“Any FFA Alumni member can tell you that participating in FFA requires the ability to work hard. This group is preparing for career and leadership development competitions and simultaneously working to help support the school and community through other projects,” commented Rich. “They never give up and they work very hard at it. I’m very proud of each student and all they’ve accomplished.”
Director of Career and Technical Education, Lindsey Parham, believes the success of Gleason’s FFA program can be measured by the group’s high level of school and community involvement.
“Developing long-lasting connections in the community is a huge part of the mission of FFA. We are so proud of all that Gleason students do to help build the community of Gleason,” said Parham.
For more about Weakley County Schools, visit weakleycountyschools.com.