WARRENTON, MISSOURI (Feb. 27, 2021) - This National FFA Week, one Missouri community made a statement with their support of a local FFA chapter fighting to keep agricultural education in their high school. Warrenton FFA Alumni and Supporters hosted an event with a goal of raising $20,000 to fund their program. However, with the overwhelming backing of locals and businesses, they raised over $70,000. Several Warren County Cattlemen's Association members and Missouri Cattlemen's Association Executive Vice President Mike Deering were in attendance.
"We stand with Warrenton as they fight to preserve their FFA program," Deering said. "We were shocked and inspired by their fundraiser where the community came out in droves to send a very clear message to their school board that career and technical education matter."
MCA believes workforce development is essential to keeping Missouri and local communities economically viable today and into the future. Career and technical education in middle school and high school teach life skills for all participants and prepare students for lifelong careers. Deering said programs like Missouri FFA Association are leadership development at its finest and are essential in preparing youth for higher education, technical school or the workforce.
"Substantially reducing or eliminating these programs will have long-term consequences on communities, from the bank to the hardware store to all facets of rural economic development," Deering said.
Agriculture has an $85.2 million impact in Warren County and generates roughly $16.8 million in tax revenue. The Warrenton FFA Chapter has an 80-year track record of successes, giving students opportunities for personal growth, career development and premier leadership.
"We've been with them since the beginning of this nonsense, and we will continue to fight like hell alongside Warrenton FFA Alumni and Supporters, Warren County Cattlemen's Association and any agricultural program threatened by its school board," Deering said.