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This conference looked at the future of green and climate change education, and embedding a focus on sustainability into education in England.
It was an opportunity to consider progress on the DfE’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy published last year.
Delegates looked at the implementation of the Strategy so far, including the provision of teacher training and CPD, the new Natural History GCSE with first teaching expected in 2025, and the creation and utilisation of the National Education Nature Park which is expected to go live later this year.
We are pleased to have been able to include a keynote session with Jonathan Dewsbury, Chief Sustainability Officer, Department for Education.
Overall, discussion looked at:
- DfE’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy:
- implementation so far - practicalities of integrating climate education and sustainability teaching into the curriculum
- teacher training and support - providing new and established staff with skills and confidence to deliver green and climate change education
- introduction of regional sustainability hubs to encourage peer-to-peer learning
- outdoor learning provision:
- accessibility and inclusion - the establishment and role of the National Education Nature Park - impact of the project on the wider schools estate
- ways to link universities, schools, local authorities, charities and other stakeholders to improve access to green spaces and enhance opportunities
- new qualifications: implementation of the new Natural History GCSE, expected to be available from September 2025 with a consultation on subject content expected in due course
- further study: prospects and options for green curricula in higher and further education
- employment: identifying and providing skills needed for students in the green jobs market, and in other sectors where sustainability and climate change will have increasing importance
- collaboration: establishing links between educational institutions, businesses and other stakeholders - impact on student progression, access and enhanced experience of outdoor study
The conference was an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who attended from the CCC; Defra; DESNZ; DfE; DfT; Forestry Commission; Homes England; LocatED; and the Government of Jersey.