As you may know, Global Climate Strike rallies are being held across North America this upcoming Friday, September 27. These rallies are timed to coincide with the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York and are being organized online under the hashtag #FridaysForFuture.
In recent days, school districts have begun to acknowledge the likelihood of student participation in these rallies, and to formally offer their support for this call to action.
Here in the Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows School District, personal and social responsibility is one of our key defining values. We are committed as a district to acting as responsible stewards within our community, and we seek to develop the leadership and citizenship capacity of all learners.
Over the past several years, we have encouraged our students to engage in various environmental sustainability initiatives and have been proud of their achievements in this area. In the last school year alone, student-led initiatives during our annual SD42 Energy Challenge resulted in energy savings of 43,624 kilowatt hour (kWh) of electricity and 169 gigajoules (GJ) of natural gas – enough to power five residential homes for an entire year. This is extraordinary work. We have also seen an increase in the number of “green teams” in our schools, resulting in tangible, student-driven solutions that have had a measurable impact on our community.
As a district, we also recognize the importance of student engagement and student leadership in important issues that affect our communities. That said, the decision to participate in a climate rally should always be an informed one and should only be made after a thorough discussion within individual families. To learn more about the Global Climate Strike initiative, visit https://www.fridaysforfuture.org.
If after a family discussion your child chooses to attend a climate rally, we ask that you please notify the school of their absence. Students who participate in a rally will have an opportunity to make up any work they miss.
Our school district remains deeply committed to environmental sustainability and will continue to ensure that our students have many opportunities throughout the school year to take on a leadership role in this important area.