Students at Istrouma High learn process of growing fish in classrooms
BATON ROUGE - It's normal to see desks and chairs in a classroom, but what about fish?
Istrouma High School is offering a program to students that teaches the process of growing fish, which actually produces vegetables as well.
"The meaning of aquaphonics is when the waste from the fish provides a fertilizer for the plants, and the plants clean the water to return back to the fish," Andrew Holmes told WBRZ.
Holmes is a teacher at Istrouma. He says the process is not only a time saver, but a safer way to grow vegetables. Spring is normally the season to grow catfish, but this process eliminates time allowing the catfish to grow anytime during the year.
"Fresh lettuce, no soil, no chemicals, nothing," Holmes said. "Just straight water and fish waste, fish waste is good though," said Holmes.
Once a catfish reaches a weight between six to eight pounds, the school will sell them.
"We have partnered with Tony Seafood," Holmes added.
He believes the entire purpose of the program is to produce a product for the community, and to invest in students.
"They have agreed to buy so many fish and that money will go towards children's scholarships at LSU," Holmes said.
Rahma is a sophomore currently enrolled in the program. She says this is very new to her.
"My mother, she is from Asia, so over there people are always growing plants," she said. "It's just different because there is no soil, and it's fish involved."
She believes it can lead agriculture in a better direction.
"It's definitely a better way to grow food, it's quicker and healthier," Rahma added.
The school will sell the catfish to Tony’s Seafood in North Baton Rouge along with other local businesses.