Promoting Professional Development and Best Practice in EE
Help Secure Climate Education Cosponsors
Please help us solicit support for the Climate Change Education Act this summer by asking your Senators and Representatives to co-sponsor the bills. The Act would authorize $20M for climate education around the US.
Sen. Ed Markey (MA) and Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (NH-1) introduced the identical bills in April (S. 2740, H.R. 5606), and now it is up to each state to engage their legislators to persuade them to cosponsor the Act. For our existing friends in Congress, this means outreach by just a few trusted members from your community, hopefully in conjunction with an endorsement from your state environmental education association. You will need to connect with an environmental staff specialist in your legislators’ office (preferably in D.C.) and ask them to cosponsor the legislation. This can be done over the phone, by email, or (even better) in person. If you already have a relationship with staff in the office, start there. Otherwise, call the D.C. office and ask for the person who works on environment issues, and initiate a conversation with them.
For our environmental ed champs, it may take just a single call or email to get a cosponsorship. For others, it may mean making the local case for climate education; telling them the names of other local legislators who have already signed-on; asking the most influential local person you know such as a trustee of an NGO, large education provider, or important business owner, to help make the pitch. Other strategies include organizing a local sign-on letter for organizations, companies, and individuals who you can find who support the issue. If you need help with any strategy or anything else, please contact us; see below. Current cosponsors and complete Congressional voting records on environmental education can be found at https://goo.gl/7oivkJ - a tab on the bottom switches between House and Senate.
We ask you to make your requests now so that almost every Member of Congress will be asked by September 1st. More information about this campaign - www.naaee.org/advocacy/current-issues. Please contact us if you need any help.
The language of the bills are identical. We recommend you read either one; they’re very short and in plain english, and they have some background you’ll find useful for advocacy.
More about Legislators and Prospects
Initially you should focus your requests to legislators who are friendly to environmental or climate education; those in the House or Senate who have already demonstrated support for the field... and there are plenty of them! After we get those to cosponsor, we'll double back and try to sign-up legislators that will take some more convincing. Again, record of past support can be found here: https://goo.gl/7oivkJ
Priorities in the Senate: There are over 50 Senators who have voted for or supported in some way climate and/or environmental education - we need to ask them first, specifically:
- Those who voted for Sen. Markey’s 2016 climate education program amendment to the ESSA bill: 38 Senators
- Those who cosponsored the climate education bill in the past
- Those additional Senators who have supported environmental education in anyway, or who are freshmen and whose predecessors in the Senate supported EE: 8
- Additional democrats: 4
- Additional environmentally-leaning Republicans: 10
Priorities in the House:
- Those who cosponsored the any of the climate education bill in the past: 44
- Those who voted for the climate education program amendment to the 2007 NSF bill (not included in the above list): 66
- Additional Representatives who have supported environmental education in anyway, or who is a freshman and whose predecessor in the House supported EE, or is a Republican member of the Climate Solutions Caucus: 100+
- A special focus on the 78 members who are on the Congressional Climate Solutions Caucus (39 Republicans & 39 Democrats) - https://citizensclimatelobby.org/climate-solutions-caucus/