School District #83 trustee Marty Gibbons listens to a proposed climate action belief statement, presented by student Maggie Beckner and teacher Ceren Caner, during the Tuesday, Dec. 17 board meeting at the District Education Support Centre in Salmon Arm. (Marianne VanBuskirk photo)

North-Okanagan Shuswap trustees hold off on climate action belief statement

Statement will be presented again in the new year

A statement that would help shape the North Okanagan-Shuswap school district’s approach to climate change failed to secure the support of trustees.

At the School District #83 board meeting on Tuesday evening, Dec. 17, trustees opted to refer a climate action belief statement, presented to the board by student Maggie Beckner and teacher Ceren Caner, to a partner group that includes teachers, principles, parents and trustees.

Read more: Okanagan school districts reach agreement with CUPE Local 523

Read more: Salmon Arm students embrace traditional screen-free fun

“School District #83 is responsible for the education and well-being of our students,” the statement read, going on to lay out several commitments for the board to take on. “Therefore, in the face of global climate change we are obliged to: foster the growth of ecological literacy and ethics within students, address environmental issues and climate action projects in ways that students can participate,” and “cultivate kindness, adaptability, creativity and resilience within the context of climate change.”

Carl Cooper, assistant superintendent for SD83, believes the rationale behind the board’s decision is that trustees want to get more feedback and a broader perspective.

Read more: Okanagan school districts reach agreement with CUPE Local 523

Read more: Salmon Arm students embrace traditional screen-free fun

The partner group will meet on Jan. 30, 2020, where a similar presentation will be made to the representatives.


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