Environmental education for the next generation: SC Johnson and NGO Ocean Generation announce new partnership
Ocean Academy curriculum to reach more than 50,000 UK students this year, with a focus on ocean plastic pollution.
New research suggests less than a fifth of teachers in the UK find environmental education in schools easy to teach.
The Blue Paradox
According to a recent survey* commissioned by SC Johnson, almost half (49%) of UK primary and secondary schoolteachers feel the current quality of education around environment and sustainability is not good enough, with only a fifth (21%) finding the current curriculums easy to use in classrooms. This comes as there is increased interest and investment in environmental education for young people following a COP26 announcement by the UK Department for Education to implement more climate change education in schools.
“With less than 10% of plastic produced being recycled globally, there is a clear need for greater levels of education on the action we need to take to reduce the impact plastic pollution has on the environment,” said Alan VanderMolen, Chief Communications Officer and Global Head of Philanthropy at SC Johnson. “Education is vital in creating the behaviour change needed to achieve our vision for a waste-free world, and we are proud to partner with Ocean Generation in support of Ocean Academy to build this awareness and engagement in classrooms.”
“Young people, aged 24 years and under, account for over 40% of the world population, so their understanding of the Ocean is critical,” said Richard Hill, CEO Ocean Generation. “This next generation are our future leaders, and to protect one of the earth’s most precious ecosystems, they must first understand its importance and fragility. We are thrilled to be working with an organisation like SC Johnson which shares our ambition for educating on the Ocean plastics crisis and we look forward to growing the Ocean Academy programme together.”
As one-third (33%) of teachers believe that the current curriculum fails to inspire sustainability action amongst their pupils, the Ocean Academy programme aims to ensure that a better understanding of the ocean turns into action. It is a complete curriculum consisting of accredited lesson plans available for use online and in the classroom, with content including:
- An introduction to the Ocean as a single interconnected water source supporting all life on the planet.
- The multifaceted role of the Ocean, including highlighting its role in oxygen we breathe, controlling our climate, and regulating carbon levels.
- Our impact on the Ocean, the challenges it faces, and how we can make informed decisions to better protect it.
- The future of the Ocean and inspiring young people to champion change, both at home and at school.
Supporting funding from SC Johnson will help the programme reach more than 50,000 UK pupils in 2022, in addition, to directly engaging 15,000 students through an in-person lesson offering across approximately 75 schools. By tackling the shortage of quality education on the environment available, Ocean Academy aims to educate young people, promote tangible behaviour change, and inspire collective action to tackle ocean plastic pollution.
More information on Ocean Academy can be found at myoceanacademy.org. Information on SC Johnson’s sustainability efforts can be found at www.scjohnson.com/en/a-more-sustainable-world.
*Research conducted March 2022, surveying 500 UK teachers on their attitudes towards environmental education in schools. Both Primary and Secondary and fee and non-fee-paying schoolteachers were involved in the study.
About SC Johnson
Founded in 1886 and headquartered in Racine, Wisconsin USA, SC Johnson believes that a more sustainable, healthier and transparent world that inspires people and creates opportunities isn't just possible – it's our responsibility. A heritage of innovation and bold, transparent decisions is why our high-quality products and iconic brands – including OFF!® Raid®, Glade®, Windex®, Scrubbing Bubbles®, Ziploc®, Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day®, method®, Autan®, Baygon®, Mr Muscle®, Duck®, Lysoform® and more – are in homes, schools and businesses in virtually every country worldwide. Since 1937, SC Johnson has annually given 5% of all pretax profits to charity. Over the last decade, SC Johnson has invested more than $300 million into families, communities, and the planet worldwide. Today, our community efforts focus on building a more sustainable world, a healthier world, and a world with more opportunity. Please visit our dedicated UK LinkedIn page here: https://www.linkedin.com/company/sc-johnson-professional/
About Ocean Generation
Ocean Generation is an inclusive global movement that exists to restore a healthy relationship between humanity and the Ocean. Established in 2009 by film producer Jo Ruxton, Ocean Generation have galvanised a growing wave of change by exposing the threat of plastic pollution to our health and the health of our Ocean. Their award-winning documentary ‘A Plastic Ocean’, was named by Sir David Attenborough as “one of the most important films of our time” and ignited mass public awareness about the impact of plastic on our Ocean. Today they address the full range of human actions threatening the Ocean with a particular focus on engaging young people.
No ordinary NGO, Ocean Generation combines the disruptive energy of a youth collective with a decade of on-the-ground experience in promoting Ocean action through science, storytelling, and film.