Our School Farm
Eastfield School is one of a few primary schools in England to have a working farm onsite. The farm was set up in 2007 to help the children and community of Eastfield School to understand where their food comes from.
The farm has won various awards and has been featured on local news programs and the BBC One show Countryfile. In 2017 Eastfield School Farm won a prestigious national award. The school was named ‘Primary Farm School of the Year 2017’ and awarded runners up for ‘Best Use of a School Farm in the Curriculum’. These awards were hosted at the Royal Agricultural University and the Press release can be found here- Farm Press Release.
The farm has been a haven for the children and their families. Providing the opportunity and respite offered by caring for the animals during the chaos of Covid-19.
The farm has changed a lot over the last twelve years. We currently have pigs, chickens and quails. In the past we have had ducks, lambs, sheep, goats, guinea pigs and rabbits. We strive to provide the animals with a good quality of life by proving them with as close as possible to their natural environment within our school grounds. The pig is given opportunities to forage through pasture rotation and we leave her piglets with her for longer than is standard practice. The chickens get to free range and dust bath in a large wood chipped area and are able to shelter in the colder and wetter months in a weather protected poly tunnel. Whilst we enjoy breeding rare old English breeds, we have also rescued many of our chickens from battery farms.
The farm is a whole school responsibility and each year group takes a turn caring for the animals for a week. The children collect the eggs and feed and water the animals every day, along with checking on their welfare. During their duty week many of the classes stay outside to use the farm within their English, Maths and topic lessons. This year we are reviewing the management of the farm in order to improve the sustainability (both economically and environmentally), we will also be involving the children more in the running and decision making on the farm.
Spring is a very exciting time at Eastfield Primary school! In the past, we have raised chicks, ducklings, quails, piglets and lambs and we hope to repeat some of these experiences this year for the children.