APES students build raingarden

Isabelle Neal , Staff Writer

While many students are stuck inside studying for finals and preparing final projects, AP Environmental Science (APES) students have a different kind of project: they are building a rain garden.

Raingardens are gardens that are strategically placed in areas that will intercept rainwater runoff so that they can effectively serve as water filtration systems. The raingarden being built at South will help to manage the water waste coming from the parking lot.

“When you have a parking lot, the water doesn’t go anywhere. With [the raingarden] the water will slow down and be soaked up by plants instead of eroding the pavement,” APES teacher Amanda Figolah said.

The raingarden will be located in the field by the overflow parking lot and will resemble a normal garden with native vegetation. All APES students are involved in the labor of creating the garden as it corresponds directly with class curriculum topics such as water usage and soil biodiversity.

“This project is nice and consistent with what we do in class,” Figolah said.

The project is the first of its kind to be done in Monroe County on school property, and is a new kind of project for APES as well. In the past, APES final projects have been focused on energy conservation, this is the first to address naturalization and habitats. The project is based on what students see a need for in the school community.

“APES has a different approach to learning. We’re on the ground and seeing things, this is not something you can learn out of a textbook. There are educational components to this project that we are using to make a real impact,” Figolah said.