NCCF grant to benefit Cassadaga Academy at Maple Avenue

Kevin Bourgoine, Academy at Maple Avenue principal, pictured at center, receives a check from Jane Dickerson, Vice President of the Erie 2-Chautauqua-Cattaraugus BOCES Educational Foundation, in the amount of $14,000 for the Academy at Maple Avenue greenhouse project. Also pictured, from left, are Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Danielle O'Connor; Director of Alternative and Special Education Jennifer Saboda; and Kurt Warmbrodt, Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation grants committee member. This grant was made possible through Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation's generous community-minded donors.

CASSADAGA — The Academy at Maple Avenue and surrounding areas throughout Cassadaga will be in full bloom thanks to a $14,000 grant secured by the Erie 2-Chautauqua-Cattaraugus BOCES Educational Foundation.

The fall community grant, one of 17 awarded by the Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation, will help offset the cost for the purchase and installation of a greenhouse.

“This project will allow students to learn to care for living organisms and focus on nourishing and growing food that can sustain them and others,” said Kevin Bourgoine, Academy at Maple Avenue principal. “When combined with science education, the greenhouse will become a form of experiential learning that has the potential to be more effective than traditional classroom learning.”

The Academy at Maple Avenue is a newly established Alternative Education Program serving students from 19 public school districts in Chautauqua County. The 14×32 greenhouse will be incorporated into the Living Environment course and act as a gateway between students and the community.

“Our goal is to work with several community organizations, including Citizens for a Better Cassadaga, the Cassadaga Lake Association and Partners in Kind to identify areas throughout the community where we can plant flowers grown in the greenhouse,” Bourgoine said. “We recently held a community open house for the Academy at Maple Avenue and the response from the community was terrific. As a newly established school, despite having students from throughout the county, Cassadaga has welcomed us and we hope this greenhouse project can be used to continue and build upon the relationship between our school and the community.”

Planning for the A-frame greenhouse is scheduled to begin in February, with preparation of land and installation expected in late spring.

“The NCCF is proud to partner with the E2CCB Educational Foundation on the creation of the innovative Greenhouse Project. This project will allow BOCES to advance their mission through the implementation of both a horticulture and aquaponics program at their Cassadaga location,” said Eileen Ardillo, Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation program coordinator. “The quality foundation of horticulture training and rich community integration will better prepare students entering college or university horticulture programs.”

This grant was made possible through Northern Chautauqua Community Foundation’s generous community-minded donors. The NCCF is committed to improving the community through the promotion of local philanthropy, strategic grantmaking and community leadership. The organization has distributed more than $14 million in the form of grants and scholarships within the community. For more information, call 366-4892 or visit

The E2CCB Educational Foundation’s mission is to enhance educational opportunities for E2CCB students and school districts through the pursuit of donations, grants and other funding options.

The greenhouse and program implementation are slated to be ready in time for the 2019-20 school year. For more information, please visit