Schools to go green with environment and sustainability GCSE subject

Ministers are in talks to introduce a qualification called natural history which include teaching on biodiversity and the dangers of climate change

Teenagers will be taught in school about the dangers of climate change

Schools are set to go green with a new GCSE subject to inspire a generation of Greta Thunbergs.

Ministers are in talks to introduce a qualification in environment and sustainability, covering topics such as biodiversity and the dangers of climate change.

Swede Greta became a worldwide icon for the cause when she began speaking out at just 15.

Our new addition to the courses taken by 14 to 16 year olds would be called natural history and include teaching on biodiversity and the dangers of climate change.

Campaigner Joanne Roach, whose organization The Foodies teaches kids about food sustainability, told the Sunday Mirror: “This a great first step towards the greening of the school curriculum.”

Greta Thunberg has gone from schoolgirl to climate icon



She added: “It’s really important this GCSE is not just a qualification for people who want to work in conservation – although that is very important – but also for curious young people to take that understanding of the environment into other fields of work.

“I’m also a parent of two school leavers who are very worried about the future of the planet, and who find it frustrating knowing that there are problems to face, but not feeling knowledgeable enough to tackle them.

“Being able to learn what they could do to help would make a big difference.”

Schools standards minister Robin Walker said talks were underway with exam board OCR with a view to introducing the course.

Environmentalists participate in a march in the capital Vienna


Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

He said: “It is vital that children are taught about environmental and sustainability issues.

“The department is exploring proposals for a new GCSE in natural history. The department is carefully considering these proposals and will provide further details in due course.”

The GCSE idea was thought up by naturalist and broadcaster Mary Colwell survey revealed 80% of children could not recognize a bumblebee.

Climate activists march along Oxford Street


AFP via Getty Images)

Sharon Darcy, director of Sustainability First, said: “An understanding of the natural world we inhabit needs to start from primary school upwards, and sustainability courses could be added to GCSEs, technical qualifications and apprenticeships.

“Climate change, biodiversity and sustainability should feature more prominently in education and the national curriculum, embedded across subjects but also as discrete subjects.

“Learners should be taught to understand the relevance of sustainability in every subject and in any career they enter.

The ways subjects are taught should include different types of knowledge, diverse heritage perspectives, and a greater understanding of how traditions and culture can contribute to climate and environmental action.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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