Take Action to Ensure That No Child is Left Inside

In 2008, Governor Martin O’Malley launched the Maryland Partnership for Children in Nature. In September of last year, the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) made history by voting unanimously to pass language requiring every local public school system to provide a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary, environmental education program for all students–the first initiative of its kind in the nation. Part of a national movement to get kids back outside and reconnected to nature, Maryland’s No Child Left Inside Coalition, a coalition of 230 organizations, has been front and center in this effort. The Accokeek Foundation was one of its early members. Unfortunately, the original language for the graduation requirement was modified, resulting in a loophole that would allow school systems to meet the requirement by doing nothing new and eliminating any incentive to develop comprehensive environmental literacy programs. The Maryland No Child Left Inside Coalition is urging that the new language be rejected and has asked for everyone who is interested in supporting this effort to make their voices heard.

In response, our Director of Education and Public Programs has submitted a letter to the MSDE encouraging them to reject this new language and instead support efforts toward environmental education. Read her letter below, and take action by submitting your own by February 3.

Farmers, environmentalists must work together for sustainable agriculture

–A Letter to the Editor of the Baltimore Sun The publication of the American Farm Bureau’s response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s plans to set a strict “pollution diet” for the Chesapeake Bay (Baltimore Sun, Jan. 9, 2010) provides us with an important opportunity to open up the dialogue between farmers and conservationists. Earlier this…