Project Overview

Specifically, the Innovation CROPS Curriculum Intervention Includes:

  • Annual week long, hands-on teacher training for teachers joining the project.
  • Online interactive materials, including the CROPS mobile app.
  • Community outreach and engagement with local farmers.
  • Project-based CROPS construction and installation on unprotected tractors using the publicly available NIOSH CROPS plans.
  • A social media crowd-funding campaign for sustainability of CROPS work in the local community after the completion of the final project.

The third year of funding showed steady progress towards the project’s goals and ongoing impact in the region including:

  • During 2018-2019, the Innovative CROPS Curriculum Intervention (ICCI) was implemented in our 6th cohort of partnering high schools in the Southeast Region. As shown in Table 1 below, ten schools in seven of the ten-state service region were represented in this cohort. Tennessee, not able to participate last year, has rejoined the project. The research team continues to collect both pre and post-assessment data on demographic, knowledge, attitudes and behavioral change variable from the student participants, resulting in several peer-reviewed publications in 2019. Each of the teachers we train in the ICCI program is now in a community where that agricultural education will have a sustaining and ‘ripple’ effect for tractor and farm safety advocacy. For example, notable among school’s participating in this year’s cohort is Owen County, KY. Alex Tingle, their newly hired agricultural education teacher, was a research and teaching assistant for the CROPS project for the past year while he was obtaining his Master’s in Teaching in agricultural education at the University of Kentucky.
  • Twenty (20) CROPS were constructed and installed on 20 tractors within the communities of each school selected. Our interviews with farmers who receive the CROPS indicate to us that on average 4 other farm workers use that tractor on their operations increasing the reduction of these workers’ exposure to the hazard of an unprotected older model tractor. The models for this year’s CROPS installations are shown in Table 1. Of the 330 students enrolled in the agricultural mechanics courses at the participating high schools, all were engaged in the ICCI and assisted in the selection process of the farmers who received the CROPS installation. All the schools were in the Appalachian or Delta regions of the United States.

Table 1: ICCI School Sites 2018-19 and CROPS Models Constructed and Installed
  ICII School Sites Tractor Models
  Fall 2018 - Spring 2019 Ford 4000 MF 230 MR 135 Ford 8N Ford 3000
Kentucky Ashton Jones | Lincoln County HS   1     1
Alex Tingle | Owen County HS   1     2
North Carolina Scottie Cook | Alexander Central HS         2
Virginia Herbert Hoffeditz | Broadway HS       2  
South Carolina (Deferred to 2019 - Teacher Turnover)          
Tennessee Brandon Chaffin | Jackson County HS         2
Mississippi Meredith McCurdy-Rhodes | Lafayette HS 2        
West Virginia Cody Dent | Moore Field HS       2  
Missouri Duane Melton | Tipton HS 1     1  
Alabama Trent Hill | Fayette County HS         2