Climate Change

The national curriculum barely mentions the climate crisis. Children deserve better | Fiona Harvey | Education

There were toddlers in prams, babies in carriers, wrapped up against the cold, young children clutching placards and teenagers, thousands of them, banging drums and chanting protests. The energy and sense of urgency among the 500,000 climate marchers through Madrid at the last UN climate talks in December stood in stark contrast to the stalled, static and bloodless conference itself, where talks on the arcane technicalities of carbon markets fell apart amid acrimony. Schoolchildren have led the way in climate…

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Pupils draft their own climate bill as anxiety grows over lack of guidance for schools | Education

Like many young people, Joe Brindle, 17, is scared for the future because of the climate crisis. He is, he says, “angry about the injustice that is allowing the most vulnerable people in the world to suffer from the actions of the richest and most powerful”. So Brindle, who is preparing for his A-levels in Devizes, Wiltshire, decided to do something. On top of his studies, he founded a campaign group, Teach the Future, which has spent the last few…

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Slip-up leaves priests rolling in the aisles | Brief letters | Education

We applaud the rise in state-sector intake across Oxford University and are glad to see individual colleges praised (Report, 16 January). Perhaps Mansfield College deserves a mention. In a quietly radical fashion, we have led the way in Oxford access for 20 years. Our state intake has been over 80% for 10 years and over 90% since 2016. And more than 90% of our state-sector intake this year is from non-selective schools – a meaningful statistic for Oxford University.Lucinda RumseySenior…

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Universities divesting from fossil fuels have made history, but the fight isn’t over | Zamzam Ibrahim | Education

Today the student movement made history by announcing that more than half of UK universities have committed to divest from fossil fuel companies. Since 2012, students have campaigned to marginalise companies like Shell and BP which profit from climate breakdown. The campaign, supported by the National Union of Students,People & Planet and Students Organising for Sustainability UK, has shown the power of students taking collective action. The University of Glasgow was the first UK university to divest in October 2014,…

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England region plans world-first for climate change teaching | Education

A region of northern England plans to become the first place in the world to have a UN-accredited climate change teacher in every state primary and secondary school. Jamie Driscoll, the new mayor of the North of Tyne combined authority, said every school in the area would have the opportunity to train a member of staff to give lessons on global heating and the impact of the climate crisis. The region is working with the creators of EduCCate Global, a…

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Teacher rebellion: How Mr Jones gave up his job to fight the climate crisis | Education

Tim Jones had just landed a job as an RE teacher at a secondary school in Greenwich when he stumbled on Extinction Rebellion. Not long before, he had been seeing a counsellor for feelings of helplessness and depression about the ecosystem and how schools fed into the planet’s problems. “At that point I was at my most depressed,” he says. “It was eco-anxiety. I’d started a new job at a good school with good people, but the system was just…

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People listen to Greta Thunberg because of her creativity, not just her science | Lisette Johnston | Education

Blue Planet, Extinction Rebellion and Greta Thunberg are all household names bringing information about serious environmental issues to the masses. They’ve helped green issues shoot up the agenda for this year’s general election, with a poll last month revealing that more than half of voters said that the climate emergency would influence how they cast their vote. If it wasn’t for the media these scientific messages wouldn’t be heard or understood by millions of people. And Greta Thunberg’s extraordinary global…

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Boris beware: students are angry and we’re ready to vote against you | Zamzam Ibrahim | Education

If 1.3 million under-34s voting in 2017 was a “youthquake”, what would you call the 2.6 million registering this time around? The surge in youth and student voter registrations is no accident. Students and their unions have been working tirelessly for months: we started registering students during freshers’ week because we were determined to be ready when a general election was called. All that organising wouldn’t be effective without the fuel for social change: anger, disillusionment, injustice, and hope. The…

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Students accuse Cambridge university of ‘greenwashing’ ties with oil firms | Education

Student activists at Cambridge have accused the university of attempting to greenwash its relationship with oil and gas firms by stealing their group’s name for a project led by an academic linked to the fossil fuel industry. Cambridge University is to launch its Cambridge Zero initiative at an event in London next week. The project’s website, which is already live, touts it as a “bold response to the world’s greatest challenge”. It says that, along with developing greener technology, it…

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What hypocrisy, I think guiltily, as I jet off to academic conferences far and wide | Jonathan Wolff | Education

“What did you do on global climate protest day, Daddy?” “I was in the city centre, and joined the protest for a while. But I had to leave, as I needed to get to the airport to fly home.” I was in Hamburg that day. To speak at a conference, of course, one of many recent academic trips abroad, to China, the US and Europe, almost all by plane. Academic travel is seen as a perk of the job, although…

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We Need to Speak Up About Climate Change – Education Article

A MiddleWeb Blog For a while I was in a teacher professional learning community, organized by NASA, that talked about how to teach climate change. Much like many group therapy sessions, we shared virtual wine, resources, observations, and moral support once a month. One of the most valuable things I learned in that PLC group – something that really surprised me – was that despite all my social justice warrior tendencies, when it came right down to it, I was…

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‘The youth generation is united’: the uni students striking for the climate | Education

In a cold, dingy room at the back of a Loughborough pub, maths student Steff Farley would meet with friends to discuss an issue they felt no one was talking about on campus. These conversations over a few pints were the start of a campaign that would eventually push the university to divest from fossil fuels. The students ran peaceful, relatively small demonstrations; they’d hand out leaflets about Loughborough’s fossil fuel investments during open days, or write fossil-free slogans in…

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UK-led cancer and climate trials at risk as British researchers become liability | Education

British researchers say they are being shut out of bids for major European research partnerships, or asked to keep a low profile, because of fears that the threat of a no-deal Brexit could contaminate chances of success. An analysis by University College London of the latest EU research funding data shows that UCL and eight other Russell Group universities were running around 50 big European research collaborations a year in 2016, but only 20 in 2018. Researchers say that taking…

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As an academic, should I worry about my conference carbon footprint? | Sophia Kier-Byfield | Education

The other day, as I boarded a budget airline plane to attend a conference in Spain, I was overcome with a feeling I’ve come to recognise: carbon-footprint guilt. As a PhD student, this would be my first international conference, an exciting chance to meet fellow researchers in my field – feminism and gender studies – and discuss topics we care about. But as I sat chatting casually with other academics headed the same way, I couldn’t help but worry about…

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Much shorter working weeks needed to tackle climate crisis – study | Environment

People across Europe will need to work drastically fewer hours to avoid disastrous climate heating unless there is a radical decarbonising of the economy, according to a study. The research, from thinktank Autonomy, shows workers in the UK would need to move to nine-hour weeks to keep the country on track to avoid more than 2C of heating at current carbon intensity levels. Similar reductions were found to be necessary in Sweden and Germany. The findings are based on OECD…

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Bringing Climate Change into the E/LA Classroom – Education Article

English/language arts students have the privilege of being “transported across the globe, back in time or into the future” as they read poems, plays, novels, and articles because classrooms are “spaces of discovery, possibility, and participation where students learn to empathize with experiences of people like and unlike themselves” (Beach et al, 2017). These students grapple with big topics, universal themes, and matters of morality. They also learn to think critically and use their voice in writing. The structure and…

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