Pupils to study climate change, green economy next academic year

Primary school pupils, will from the forthcoming academic year -beginning September – start learning climate change and green economy as part of the new education curriculum.

The study of the phenomenon that bothers on environmental degradation has been integrated into the various subjects, chiefly Science, Geography and Religious and Moral Education (RME).

In English Language for instance, the pupils could be asked to write essays on climate change, its effects on the country and provide solutions to address its impacts.

According to Acting Executive Director of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Mr John A. Pwamang, the move was to help imbibe environmental consciousness into pupils to help mitigate impacts of climate change.

He was speaking at a workshop held on Tuesday in Accra where Teaching and Learning Materials (TLMs), designed to teach the new discipline, were reviewed by stakeholders in education and environment issues.

The workshop was attended by representatives from the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NaCCA) Unit of the Ghana Education Service (GES), the United Nations Institute for Training and Research and other institutions which collaborated with the EPA on the project.

According to Mr Pwamang, the integration of climate change into the curriculum was a component of a National Climate Change and Green Economy Learning Strategy developed by the agency and its partners.

He said the agency had since 2017 been working together with the Ghana Education Service to ensure the effective integration of climate change matters into the education curriculum.

“Climate change has become an important issue. Some of the interventions require a change in our attitude and we think the best way to do this is to start from the school system.”

“When they get this information into their learning materials they would be able to make the necessary changes and as we go along we can address the impacts of climate change. They will not repeat our mistake,” Mr Pwamang said.

In a presentation on the TLMS, Dr Emmanuel Tachie-Obeng, national focal person on climate change education, said the TLMS would highlight environmentally harmful practices and teach them the right practices.

 These, he said would include illegal mining and logging, water and air pollution by households, vehicles and industries and other issues such as recycling and waste management.

To ensure the effectiveness of the study of the disciplines, Dr Tachie-Obeng said the capacity of teachers in the country, would be built on the use of the TLMs, beginning next month.

He underscored the need for attitudinal change toward the environment to mitigate climate change, saying “climate change poses greatest challenge to our country and the national economy.”

By Jonathan Donkor

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