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New Jersey Department of Ed. Awards Grants to Help Schools Improve Climate Change Instruction

The New Jersey Department of Education today announced awards for two grant opportunities to help schools implement, improve, and expand climate-change instruction in the classroom.

The grants will approach climate-change instruction through two avenues:

  • An interdisciplinary learning and community projects grant will provide funds directly to school districts to help them partner with local organizations or their municipality to establish Interdisciplinary Learning Units and Community Resilience Projects. These projects will help schools impact their community through projects such as planting rain gardens with plants that will ease flooding; growing food using aquaponics to combat food insecurity; restoring native plant species; and planting dune grass to restore and protect native habitats.

  • The Climate Change Learning Collaboratives grant will fund programs in which colleges and universities will create Climate Change Learning Collaboratives to provide training to teachers on how to infuse climate change into the curriculum.

The grant programs, funded through Governor Phil Murphy’s Fiscal Year 2024 budget, are part of an overarching effort spearheaded by First Lady Tammy Murphy to effectively incorporate climate-change instruction into classroom instruction. When the New Jersey Student Learning Standards (NJSLS) were updated in 2020, New Jersey became the first state in the nation to integrate the teaching of climate change across multiple content areas, ranging from science and social studies to world languages and the arts.

“Our nation-leading climate change education standards are setting New Jersey students up for a successful future as climate literate leaders of tomorrow,” First Lady Murphy said. “These grants will ensure our state’s climate change instruction remains at the highest academic standard and that our educators are supported as they prepare new and innovative lessons. I am eager to see the creative approach each school will take to continue the successful rollout of this critical instruction across all learning standards.”

“It has become evident that climate change is an issue of such significance that it touches the lives of everyone and, in turn, our learning standards reflect the importance of ensuring students receive accurate, relevant instruction on this topic,” Acting Education Commissioner Kevin Dehmer said. “Building climate literacy today will help to prepare students to participate fully in our future workforce. These grants will help schools meet the challenge of infusing climate change across multiple subjects while making the content relevant and important to students.”

Read the full release from the New Jersey Department of Education to see the full list of awardees, including institutions of higher education and school districts.

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