Plan for compulsory school lessons on climate change backed by headteachers

Children will learn how to produce protest letters and banners as part of a scheme to introduce compulsory climate change lessons.

Headteachers – anxious to prevent activist pupils repeating the mass walkouts seen earlier this year – are expected to approve the plan at their annual conference this weekend.

Many parents have been fined for children’s unauthorised absences to attend youth strikes spurred by 16-year-old Swede Greta Thunberg.

She inspired the Fridays for Future movement which urges school boycotts until governments stick to environmental agreements.

Carlisle primary school head Graham Frost, an official of the National Association of Head Teachers, will propose the motion calling for climate change lesson.

Speaking before the meeting in Tel­­ford, Shrops, he said: “School leaders have a moral as well as a statutory duty to ensure young people receive a well-rounded education which equips them for the world they inhabit.

“I want to make sure pupils’ concerns about the future of the planet are being listened to by policy makers.

“We have a duty to provide them with a knowledge and understanding of that world with all its challenges. It’s easy for climate change dismissers to shrug and say ‘It won’t happen in my lifetime!’

“It is much harder for them to look a child in the eye and say the same reprehensible words.”

On March 15 an estimated 50,000 UK children took part in strikes in more than 150 towns and cities. They were among an estimated 1.6 million students protesting in 125 countries.

The next co-ordinated international action will be on Friday, May 24.

  • Ten protesters from the youth wing of Extinction Rebellion chained themselves to a fence outside Parliament in Central London on Friday

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