Should Students Learn About Climate Change in School? – The New York Times

by | Dec 1, 2022 | Climate Change

In “Many States Omit Climate Education. These Teachers Are Trying to Slip It In,” Winston Choi-Schagrin writes, “Around the United States, middle school science standards have minimal references to climate change and teachers on average spend just a few hours a year teaching it.” The article begins:In mid-October, just two weeks after Hurricane Ian struck her state, Bertha Vazquez asked her class of seventh graders to go online and search for information about climate change. Specifically, she tasked them to find sites that cast doubt on its human causes and who paid for them.It was a sophisticated exercise for the 12-year-olds, Ms. Vazquez said, teaching them to discern climate facts from a mass of online disinformation. But she also thought it an important capstone to the end of two weeks she dedicates to teaching her Miami students about climate change, possible solutions and the barriers to progress.“I’m really passionate about this issue,” she said. “I have to find a way to sneak it in.”That’s because in Florida, where Ms. Vazquez has taught for more than 30 years, and where her students are already seeing the dramatic impacts of a warming planet, the words “climate change” do not appear in the state’s middle or elementary school education standards.Climate change is set to transform where students can live and what jobs they’ll do as adults. And yet, despite being one of the most important issues for young people, it appears only minimally in many state middle scho …

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