NOAA announces $4.5 million in environmental literacy grants to support K-12 science education and stewardship projects

September 19, 2012

NOAA announced today the results of its recent competitions for education grants to enhance science education activities in classrooms, aquariums, museums and other institutions across America. A total of $4.5 million in grants from the NOAA Office of Education’s Environmental Literacy Grants Program will be awarded to support six unique, multi-year projects.

Projects are designed to increase stewardship and informed decision-making within a diverse pool of educators, students and the public to help promote environmental literacy. The selected projects will partner with NOAA’s research laboratories, national marine sanctuaries, Climate Program Office, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Weather Service, Pacific Services Center, Coral Reef Conservation Program and Sea Grant.

“NOAA’s Office of Education is proud to partner with such an impressive group of organizations,” said Louisa Koch, director of education at NOAA. “It is only with the help of institutions such as these that we can successfully engage the public in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) topics while supporting NOAA’s mission of science, service, and stewardship’.”

These multi-year projects will focus on engaging formal and informal educators along with K-12 students. Project activities include formal K-12 educator training programs to help teachers incorporate NOAA data and other resources into experiential learning activities; service learning programs for K-12 students that combine standards-based learning with stewardship activities in students’ local communities; and professional development to enhance informal science educators’ effectiveness in increasing public understanding of complex ocean topics. 

Recipients include:

The eight grants will be two to four years in duration and range in value from approximately $232,000 to $1,355,000. Awards were selected through peer-reviewed processes from a total of 104 applications received. NOAA’s program offices and research laboratories work closely with applicants to ensure projects incorporate the agency’s unique assets and current oceanic and atmospheric research in order to increase the awareness and utilization of NOAA’s work in education projects.

Congress established NOAA’s Environmental Literacy Grants Program in 2005. NOAA is planning to release a new funding opportunity in late winter 2013. A comprehensive list of awards and more information on NOAA’s Office of Education funding opportunities is available online.

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