Rural Schools Advocacy, Stories from the Driftless

A Tour of the Riverdale HS Agricultural Program with Kally Koch — PRTP35



In this episode, we’re heading to the Riverdale School District. The Riverdale School District is about 50 minutes north of Platteville. It encompasses several small towns, but most notably Blue River, Avoca, and Muscoda. The high school, where we’re going today, is in Muscoda. The district itself is definitely rural with just over 700 students K12. You’re joining me on this three-part tour with their agricultural education teacher, Kally Koch, to learn what their agricultural education department of one is doing and how the school district has supported her and her kids, and lastly how the community has historically wrapped around agricultural education. It’s absolutely remarkable what they have for assets in the district. You’re going to tour the following three places: 1.) the building at the high school, 2.) their school farm, And lastly, 3.) their brand new agricultural center, the Jack Meister Agricultural Center, just 3 miles from the high school.

Follow Riverdale FFA on Facebook.

Some of the Courses Offered

  1. Vet Science 
  2. Small Animal/Companion
  3. Large Animal Science
  4. Horticulture
  5. Landscaping
  6. Crop/Soil Science
  7. Food Science
  8. Advanced Food Science (Farm to Table)
  9. Wildlife/Natural Sources
  10. Ag Business
  11. Ag Mechanics

Credentials Offered

  1. Southwest Technical College Transcripted Courses in Animal Science
  2. OSHA certification in food safety
  3. Briggs and Stratton
  4. Starrett Certifications
    1. Snap-on
    2. Torque
    3. Multimeter
    4. Precision Measuring
    5. AC/DC
  5. WI DNR Snowmobile Safety
  6. WI DNR ATV/UTV Safety
  7. WI DNR Trappers Education
  8. ICEV Certification (Capstone Experience)

Facility Facts

  1. Greenhouse
  2. Headhouse
  3. Animal Lab
    1. Two stalls 
    2. Observation area
    3. Window into main classroom
    4. Water, floor drain, garage door
  4. Classroom w/2 Kitchens new in [what year?]
    1. Suspended power
  5. Jack Meister Agricultural Center (Finished in Fall of 2022)
    1. Reception Space
    2. 50×50 Pole Shed
    3. Open-Air Leanto
    4. Chicken coop
  6. Farm gifted by the Mac Mueller family in 1962
    1. Overall acres: 147 acres here, 40 acres in Blue River
    2. Tillable acres: 44 tillable acres
    3. Wooded acres: several acres forest management program with 8 different sections
    4. Test Plot (44 varieties)
    5. Apple trees
    6. Pumpkin patch
    7. Pollinator Garden
    8. Sweet corn
    9. Christmas Trees
    10. Sunflowers