New Jersey incorporates climate change into K-12 curriculum standards for public schools

New Jersey became the first state to incorporate climate change into K-12 curriculum standards at the start of the 2022-2023 school year.

The State Board of Education first announced that they would adopt the new curriculum standards in June 2020, after the curriculum changes were initiated by New Jersey First Lady Tammy Murphy. The updated standards aim “to prepare students to understand how and why climate change happens and the impact it has on our local and global communities as well as to act in informed and sustainable ways.”

The state board is responsible for updating the state’s curriculum standards every five years. The board establishes required curriculum standards that local districts must adhere to and provides recommendations to assist local districts in implementing the curriculum. New Jersey school districts can find resources for teaching climate change on the New Jersey Climate Education website.

Gov. Phil Murphy wrote on Twitter on Sept. 6, 2022, “Our children are our future, and the lessons New Jersey students will learn with this new curriculum will bring us one step closer to building our green economy and reaching and sustaining 100% clean energy by 2050.”

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