With the impacts of global warming becoming increasingly visible and devastating, it is essential that we equip young people with the knowledge and skills they need to tackle this crisis head-on.
The importance of such an approach cannot be overstated. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), global temperatures have already risen by 1.1°C above pre-industrial levels.
The consequences of this warming are already being felt around the world, with more frequent and severe weather events, rising sea levels, and the loss of biodiversity. In the UK, the impacts of climate change are expected to be particularly severe.
According to a report by the Climate Change Committee, the country is likely to experience more frequent and intense heatwaves, flooding, and droughts, as well as increased pressure on freshwater resources and wildlife.
Given these sobering statistics, it is clear that urgent action is needed to mitigate the effects of climate change. We need a generation of young people who are equipped with the knowledge, skills, and values to make sustainable choices in their personal and professional lives as they become adults.
However, there are barriers we need to remove. The pressures facing teachers to stick to the rigidity of the current curriculum, combined with exam pressure and limited funding, gives very limited opportunity to integrate sustainability. This is most prevalent within Secondary schools, where students are confined to only learning the theory of climate change within geography and science classes.
Brands like WWF and EarthEcho are creating resources and competitions for schools to get involved and pioneer themselves as sustainability champions, but we must ask why this push is left with charitable organisations, and isn’t incorporated into the overall assessment criteria.
We know that both teachers and students alike want more sustainability education, but without a major overhaul to the curriculum, which doesn’t appear to be coming anytime soon, we’re left with a worrying trend of continuing along the same path, until it’s too late.
What are your thoughts on the importance of sustainability education and how to do you incorporate it into your school life? Let us know in the comments section below.
This article was written by the TeacherHaven team, help us support education by contributing to our blog, email us at email@example.com