NewsLocal News


KCK teacher upset over bulldozed student garden

Posted at 4:25 PM, Jul 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-29 21:51:58-04

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Chis Clemmons is a science teacher at Rosedale Middle School in Kansas City, Kansas, who wants to give his students a green thumb.

"It's really hard to get kids excited about going out in nature when there is not a lot of nature to see," Clemmons said.

He created a garden at school to teach kids all about plants and how nature works.

"The idea was to teach kids about biodiversity, about native plants, native species," Clemmons said.

The garden was set to be moved due to construction being done at the school. Clemmons had an idea of where he wanted to move the plants and trees. He put them in what he thought was a safe spot until it was time to move.

"Come May, everything was kicking into high gear. I went over the plans with both site people, managers, and I actually spent several days trying to transplant things over in this area for safe keeping," the teacher said.

Despite the work to secure the plants, he arrived at the school on Friday to see the garden gone.

"If I am being honest, I didn't sleep for two days. Just anger and rage mainly and just complete heartbreak," Clemmons said.

The garden had been bulldozed with nothing left to show for his students' hard work.

"So, I love this community and I don't want to leave this community, I don't want to leave these kids. But, at the same time, at some point you can't keep putting in the sacrifice and never see anything come to fruition," Clemmons said.

The middle school teacher said he's worried that now his students won't find the same love as he has for nature.

"These kids need some place beautiful to go to, Clemmons said.

He said he spoke with the construction company they said they did not do it.

41 Action News reached out to the Kansas City, Kansas, School District for comment and they said, “The garden is being relocated to another area due to construction.”