East Burke teacher starts beekeeping club

East Burke teacher starts beekeeping club
Posted on 10/24/2019

Morganton, NC - Once Foreign Language Teacher Drew Laningham finishes up his fourth period class at East Burke High School, he doesn’t pack up and call it a day. Instead he takes a group of students outside to tend to more than a dozen beehives.

Laningham recently started the East Burke High School Beekeeping Club to help students learn about honeybees and how they have a very important job in our society. Laningham also serves as the Burke County Beekeepers Association President. Students in the club have the opportunity to operate and keep up their own beehive and harvest the honeycomb that is created. 


Laningham said, “Why not get students interested here at East Burke? We have about 20 students that are active in the club.”

He says there is importance in beekeeping because one-third of what is sold in the produce section of the grocery store has to be pollinated by bees, so teaching the students about beekeeping is critical for the future.

 “Since honeybees have 30,000 to 50,000 bees in each beehive they actually do more pollination than butterflies or bumble bees.”

Laningham said students have to go through bee school before they are allowed to be near the hives where the they learn about bee anatomy, how the bees function in their short, six-week lifespan and about the different types of bees.

He said, “They learn how to extract honey and are assigned to a team of two to take care of a beehive. And they have the ability to take home one beehive to manage over the summer.” 

East Burke is the only school to have a beekeeping club, but Laningham hopes that this club will spark an interest at other high schools and stir up friendly competition.

Beekeeping Club   Beekeeping Club

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