Today, March 15th, sees another demonstration of student concern about the inadequacy of government policy re climate change: Youth Strike 4 Climate Movement [YS4CM]. The organising group is the UK Student Climate Network, working with NUS.
Here are the 4 demands that the UK student climate network is making about climate:
– The Government declare a climate emergency and prioritise the protection of life on Earth, taking active steps to achieve climate justice.
– The national curriculum is reformed to address the ecological crisis as an educational priority.
– The Government communicate the severity of the ecological crisis and the necessity to act now to the general public.
— The Government recognise that young people have the biggest stake in our future, by incorporating youth views into policy making and bringing the voting age down to 16.
As you see, there's a lot in there for government to do, which I think is a pity as this is akin to putting all your eggs into a basket with whopping holes in it. In a liberal democracy (which we just about still are), there are other actors too. As such I’m concerned about what I see as a waste of effort on these Fridays, although it’s always nice to get out.
How much better for these well-meaning students to be striking inside the school to put pressure on complacent heads and governors to change how the school addresses these issues. This will have to be done anyway sometime even if (a big if) the DfE fiddles with the curriculum (and please note, not the national curriculum!). DfE will not be doing the hard curriculum thinking about what students should be experiencing and learning. Anyway, it should not in a liberal democracy.
So, YS4CM, are you going to stimulate this thinking? If not, who is?