The Education (Environment and Sustainable Citizenship) Bill has just had its second reading in the House of Lords. Teach the Future is campaigning in support of the bill. The Department for Education Minister, Baroness Berridge, did not support the bill during the second reading, but Teach the Future hopes that the campaign can gain the support of the Department for Education before the committee stage. NAEE is supporting this campaign because it is obviously relevant to what we promote.
The Bill would bring forward more suitable climate education by making three fundamental changes to the Education Act 2002:
– This amendment would ensure that showing care for other people and the planet is an essential part of young people’s learning, including showing a concern for people around the world, which is an integral part of learning about and pushing for climate justice.
– It makes the provision of education on sustainable citizenship part of the curriculum for all secondary school pupils, with guidance given by the Secretary of State.
– It makes changes to the meaning of the subject “citizenship” in Key Stage 1 to add lessons that promote learning about protecting and restoring natural environments. This addition to the Citizenship course would include learning about the climate emergency and climate justice, but it would not be limited to this. This change to the meaning of citizenship would ensure that students in this lesson would learn about the deterioration of natural environments and how to protect and restore them, bringing up how to take care of environments and people living in them.
These provisions would be a step forward in helping students learn about the climate crisis, and in promoting care for the environment. Because of the importance of this Bill, Teach the Future has organised a letter for other organisations to sign, to ask Secretary of State Williamson to support it.
NAEE is one of the signatories of this letter, and we are posting this blog to show our support and encourage other organisations to sign the letter that will be sent before the Committee stage of the bill in the Autumn.
So, if you are from an organisation that would like to sign the letter, please email email@example.com with the signatory’s name, their role in the organisation, and the organisation’s name, with the subject line “Education (Environment and Sustainable Citizenship) Bill letter”.