Earth Day Network is launching a campaign for global environmental and climate literacy by Earth Day 2020. We are dedicated to ensuring that every student around the world graduates high school as an environmental and climate literate citizen, ready to take action and be a voice for change. This goal is not only an enormous undertaking, it is critical and timely. The signing of the Paris Agreement is one step towards mitigating the impacts of climate change. Education needs to be a key part of this effort.
Earth Day Network has released research on the status of environmental literacy policies in the United States. We have also joined a large collaborative network of nonprofits, government organizations and business leaders in a campaign for global environmental and climate literacy. This is more than a campaign issue and more than a US issue, this is a global issue. We ask that you help us take a stand and support teaching for environmental and climate literacy in K-12 schools. Education is the key to advocacy and advocacy is the key to change.
In response to the lack of formalized environmental education in the United States, 48 states are in the process of developing Environmental Literacy Plans (ELP) through their state environmental education organization. This will involve the integration of environmental education into current state curricula, propose graduation requirements for environmental literacy, suggest steps for teacher professional development, detail assessment strategies and propose funding sources and policy action steps. Due to large variations in educational systems, policies, and politics on a state-by-state basis, the 48 ELPs are in dramatically different phases of progress.
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