2nd November 2021
The Irish National Teachers’ Organisation (INTO) today joined voices with other teacher unions in Ireland and Britain to call for a strengthened role for educators in the fight against climate change.
An open letter signed by leaders in the British and Irish Group of Teacher Unions (BIGTU) says “it is imperative that education systems are strengthened to face the climate crisis through increased funding, improved infrastructure, and continuous professional development for teachers.”
The letter coincides with the COP26 United Nations Climate Change Conference taking place in Glasgow over the next fortnight.
“As reported by Education International in its recent analysis of 73 updated Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) presented for the COP, no country is doing enough to meet the criteria – the United Kingdom ranks 42nd out of 73 countries, while the EU (including the Republic of Ireland) ranks 53rd.
“This is a cause of deep concern for us as General Secretaries of education unions,” the letter states.
BIGTU, represents almost one million education practitioners in Britain and Ireland.
It has called on governments to adopt five key actions in respect of education, including climate change education based on science in which every student transitions from formal education climate-literate. This requires a transformation of schools and learning environment and further training for teachers, BIGTU says.