Write a Letter to the Editor
Please consider taking a few minutes to draft a letter to the editor of your local newspaper in support of the No Child Left Inside Act.
Sample Letter to the Editor (pdf document)
Virtually all newspapers now prefer letters to be sent as emails; consult their websites for the submission information, or call the editorial department. In writing a letter, please follow these guidelines:
- Letters must be individually written or editors will reject them. Letters should also be short and to the point usually no more than 200 words or so, depending on the newspaper’s policy.
- Localize your letter, perhaps by citing a high-quality environmental education program underway in your area one that is perhaps threatened by lack of funding or one that is booming and providing great instruction to lots of people.
- Letters should follow a relevant article or editorial in the newspaper. This could be anything having to do with education funding, No Child Left Behind, environmental education, or news about an environmental challenge such as global warming.
- Include any of these key talking points:
- Congress is reauthorizing the No Child Left Behind law.
- A good education is about more than math and reading. We should also be teaching our young people about their natural environment and the enormous challenges it faces.
- Environmental education has been shown to excite students. It engages them in their world. And it gets them in the outdoors and away from electronic toys.
- No Child Left Behind and its emphasis on testing has made it hard for teachers to devote adequate time to environmental education.
- There is inadequate funding for environmental education, both at the state and federal levels.
- The No Child Left Inside Act of 2009 will begin to address this.
- It would increase funding for environmental education focusing on teacher training and capacity building.
- It will give states new incentives to create environmental literacy plans to make sure graduates understand the environment.
- The legislation will help us fulfill our obligation to educate young people about the environment to help them be good stewards and to inspire them to help find solutions to the issues confronting us, such as global warming and the loss of environmentally sensitive habitats.
- We can’t expect our kids to tackle the environmental problems we are leaving for them without a good educational grounding in the environment.
- Urge our local members of Congress to support environmental education in the No Child Left Behind reauthorization.