MCOE Education Spotlight: Students learning outdoors at Camp Green Meadows

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- In ABC30's segment, Education Spotlight, Action News Anchor Landon Burke will talk with Merced County Office of Education (MCOE) officials about some of the biggest topics in education.

North Valley students are once again learning in the great outdoors. Landon Burke spoke with the folks at Camp Green Meadows Outdoor School.

Landon: So, first things first, I hear that you guys had something of a milestone that you celebrate this week as far as the student return. Can you tell me about that?

Bob Bassett: First time since the pandemic started that we have had kids back on campus for overnight field trips, and it's a lot of work. It's exciting, and there's things that we figured out a little bit as we go. But we are giving one heck of a student experience. Kids are happy staff is happy parents, teachers, it's a really nice experience for sure.

Landon: Now for the folks that you know, haven't maybe heard from Camp Green Meadows in a while, could you kind of bring us up to speed on what you guys have been doing really the last year or so? To continue this mission of education when you couldn't bring students physically out to the campsite for overnight stays.

Bob: Yes, sir. So we did a few, we did a couple of things. During the height of the pandemic, kids couldn't come to Camp Green Meadows so we brought it to kids. And in some instances, we're still doing that. We created a virtual campaign that is a program. And as you know, we're run by the Merced County Office of Education. So education is at the top of our list. And so we were able to create curriculum, science curriculum based around what we have in every meadow, the outdoors still, and we created that bundle it up, we expanded on things that we normally can't do just at camp at that campus here. And we put that in a format that teachers were able to use in the classroom for kids as a major construction project on campus. As you can see, behind me, we have our new nurses building. Absolutely amazing. And that expanded our classroom space, our nurses' space, and we have access for all students in there. It's really an amazing building an amazing commitment from the county office for generations of students to come. And as you know, we did get quite a bit of snow out here.

Landon: Now, Bob, I hear that you guys are looking to hire some additional staff. Is that right?

Bob: Yes, sir. So we are running our program here with about half of the normal staff that we normally run the program with, and we're asking schools to help us out with it with additional staff so that we are able to create that safe program for kids that that's our top priority. But we absolutely are looking for naturalists, lead naturalists. We call this naturalist Senior. And we have several positions that are still open. They can be found at
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