Amy Edelman and Brenda Board, guest chefs, with the students who enjoyed their creations using garden produce.

Amy Edelman and Brenda Board, guest chefs, with the students who enjoyed their creations using garden produce.

by Adam Eyring

J.S. Jenks Elementary School has been receiving a lot of much appreciated support from the community in the past year and we would like to make our thanks more public.

Thanks to coordination by Amy Edelman, President of Green in Chestnut Hill (GRINCH), we received a massive load of Christmas tree mulch in January. It was used to create bedding on the trails to control erosion on the Southampton side.

We received a donation of paint from Chestnut Hill’s new Sherwin-Williams store to continue the progress in improving our auditorium. Jenks parent Santos Velez and his work partner Wilfredo Cardona of Bowman Properties spent two afternoons in the spring to put a fresh coat of paint on the walls. We really appreciated the painting because it was the hardest task so far of the small improvements we’ve made to the auditorium over the years.

We are appreciative of Kilian Hardware for helping us with tool and container purchases so we can improve our recycling program and outdoor appearance.

We are indebted to the Rev. Martin Lohrmann for coordinating volunteers from Christ Ascension Lutheran and St. Martin’s churches and Jenks parents for doing a wonderful job of cleaning up the grounds of debris, spreading mulch, and trimming the shrubs just before the kids returned to school.

We will never forget the generous contribution of points from parents, staff, and the community to our Recyclebank grant projects, greatly improving our recycling and helping us start a vegetable garden/nutrition program.

The vegetable garden was a success! Recyclebank grant funds were used to purchase seeds and tools in the spring. The students started a garden of tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and lettuce. They also enjoyed a nutrition seminar by parent Angela Stewart, Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner and Health Coach, and physical education teacher Laura Whitney.

A group of current and former parents and volunteers kept the garden watered and weeded through the summer. We enjoyed the crops by partnering with the Friends of Jenks to have a picnic on Tuesday Oct. 8. Amy Edelman, who also owns Night Kitchen Bakery, returned along with Brenda Board, former Jenks parent and Founder of Oliver and Company Tea Room, to prepare dishes with garden produce. There was a delicious soup full of cherry tomatoes and a basil canapé with a green pepper/thyme compote.

The garden will be part of the 4-5th grade science curriculum (but all students will visit it periodically) and we all look forward to many years of produce and picnics. Leftover produce has been donated to Keystone Hospice and the Equal Dollars Food Market.

Lastly, we give another shout out to Denise Chapline of Elfant Wissahickon and Carol Bates of Chestnut Hill Rotary for organizing a major redo of the Jenks art room. Look in a previous Local for all the details!

Again, we are appreciative of the support from the community and look forward to continuing our relationship to keep Jenks an exciting place to learn!