Climate Education Press Conference

DEAN INITIATIVE held a press conference to reemphasise our call on the Government to include Climate Education in the learning curriculum for students, holding onto COP 27 commitment which had education as its frontline action, we called on the ministries of Education and Environment to forge beneficial collaboration by adding climate education into an existing subject or introducing a new one.


We presented our climate education curriculum, a contextualised climate learning curriculum for climate educators that detailed the issues and possible solutions to climate change so that when integrated into the learning curriculum, future generations in NIGERIA can be called CLIMATE Champions

Passionate educators from our just concluded 10-day Abuja Climate Education Survey who used the transforming education survey to collect Nigerian children’s voices in shaping the future globally were there, they shared their experiences and expressed the excitement of the educators and the eagerness of pupils to put into practice all they had learnt.

.

Below is our official PRESS STATEMENT which was given to the gentlemen of the press and all present for the press conference;

PRESENTATION OF CLIMATE EDUCATION LEARNING CURRICULUM FOR CLIMATE CHANGE EDUCATORS

COP 27 has come and gone, with inspiring promises and a list of commitments, including making climate education a frontline action in addressing climate change’s devastating trajectory. We are to remind the government to keep its promises and be bold in leading actions through innovative climate education designs because, in today’s world, Climate Education has become a right for children not to be denied.

As part of our efforts as experts and critical stakeholders in the business of development design through innovative educational programming, our organisation, Development Of Educational Action Network (DEAN), formerly known as DEAN More Initiative for African Development and the World’s Largest Lesson (UK) in 2020 started working to create adaptable climate education learning materials that anyone basic teaching skills can use to dispense quality climate education teaching to students around the world. The effort has been very successful.

Nigeria is one of the selected countries we have put the use of the developed Climate Education Pack to the test for two years of school-based learning. In 2021, we rolled out the exercise in six Nigerian states; Lagos, Ogun, Ekiti, Niger, Kwara and Abuja FCT. We worked with 32 trained climate change educators to cover 32 schools across the selected six states for a six-month pilot teaching exercise to deliver contextualised Climate change- makers classes as an extracurricular exercise. 127 classes were held with over 1000 pupils who participated. We scaled to 10 schools this year(2022) and worked with 50 Educators to reach 1500 students. The results have shown explicit empirical confirmation of various scientific research that has prescribed climate education as the best short and long-term measure to fight climate change.

As an organisation, we want to emphasise that there is no more excellent tool to change the world than EDUCATION. Students must understand that climate change is not just a threat. It is a reality resulting in social, economic, and environmental instability in a country that is already vulnerable. Our contextualised resources for the classroom include all these issues and possible solutions so that future generations in Nigeria can be climate champions.

We are also calling on the ministries of Education and Environment to forge beneficial collaboration on this subject. The world is making gradual progress in climate education

The mandate of Article 6 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (Paris Agreement), to which Nigeria is a signatory to, listed six areas that should be utilised to engage the public in climate change solutions; Education is the first mechanism mentioned in Article 6. The IPCC reports have also supported climate education as a climate

response to strengthen societal responses to climate change.

already. Countries are now making climate education laws. We are passionate about this because we believe climate literacy can give people the tools to engage meaningfully with governments and corporations to help solve climate change. Argentina has drafted a law on environmental education that will make climate education compulsory in all schools. They said implementing environmental education will teach the next generation of leaders to love, protect and respect the Earth. In 2019, Italy announced a requirement for climate change studies in all Italian schools. Also, New Jersey has adopted Climate Change As Part Of The Core Curriculum In All Public Schools in the USA. And New Zealand schools also now teach students about the climate crisis, activism, and eco-anxiety.

Over the years, DEAN has championed social issues affecting young people, children, and other vulnerable groups. We celebrate the passion of our Educators across the country, especially those participating in the ongoing special Climate Education Activation in Abuja, using the Transforming Education survey to collect Nigerian children’s voices in shaping the future of education globally. We also applaud the federal government through the Ministry of Environment for implementing various initiatives in tackling the climate change crisis, as demonstrated in their ambitious plan in the NDC. As we share this Climate Education Learning Curriculum For Climate Change Educators for their use, we ask that more urgent and sustainable actions be implemented to solidify ongoing climate interventions by the government and other relevant stakeholders. Building on Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, we, as a result of this, submit these THREE(3) ASKS:

  1. Through the Ministries of Education and Environment, the Federal Government will draft a review process that will include climate education in relevant subjects across primary and secondary schools in Nigeria.
  2. Environmental/Green clubs can function across schools, which will be duly regularised.
  3. Students can participate in extracurricular activities that equip them with knowledge of nature, biodiversity, climate change, and environmental stewardship, including environment/climate literature as part of approved reading literature for pupils/students across schools in Nigeria.