Trees to Textbooks Invests $1.3 Million in Local Schools



COLUMBUS, OH – Fourteen rural Ohio school districts and their corresponding counties and townships will share more than $1.3 million from the sale of timber from Ohio’s state forests, according to the Ohio Division of Forestry.

“Investments in our schools and communities are investments in the future,” said Gov. Mike DeWine. “The funding provided by the sound management of Ohio’s forests through the Trees to Textbooks program is particularly critical right now, as educators are finding new and different ways to support our students this year.”

Through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry’s Trees to Textbooks program, a percentage of the revenue generated from state forest management activity goes to the county, township, and school district in which the activity took place.

The money from this program helps school districts, among other things, keep up with the ever-changing world of technology.

“The funding from the ‘Trees to Textbooks’ program afforded us the opportunity to increase our one-to-one technology program,” Washington-Nile Local Schools Superintendent Tony Bazler said.  “Little did we know at the time those purchases would become essential during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“It absolutely has helped us tremendously in our curriculum to keep up with advancements in technology,” Southeastern Local School District Superintendent Brian Justice said.  “We’ve used a majority of the money to keep up with Chromebooks for students and labs and with interactive TV’s that give our students a more hands-on experience.”

The Ohio Division of Forestry began distributing timber revenues to counties and townships in the early 1980s. Since the Trees to Textbooks program started in 1999, more than $33 million has been shared with Ohio school districts and local governments.

“The wood industry is one of the largest industries in this area,” said Pike County Commissioner Tony Montgomery.  “For Trees to Textbooks to utilize the greatest natural resource we have here and give back to our schools and community — I can’t think of a better program.”

The Ohio Division of Forestry is responsible for the care of more than 200,000 acres of state forests. State forestry experts manage these woodlands for overall health and diversity, soil and water conservation, improved wildlife habitat and a variety of recreational opportunities. Selected trees or areas of woodland are harvested through a competitive bid process, which includes requirements for sound management practices. All work is conducted by certified master loggers under strict monitoring.

The Ohio Division of Forestry promotes the wise use and sustainable management of Ohio’s public and private woodlands. To learn more about Ohio’s woodlands, visit Forestry.ohiodnr.gov. Follow us on Facebook at @odnrforestry and on Instagram at @odnrforestry (instagram.com/odnrforestry).

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

See the full list of the Trees to Textbooks recipients for 2020 HERE

Information courtesy of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources

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