The People Vs Climate Change

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates

I've been watching The People Vs Climate Change on IPlayer.  This engaging film follows members of the UK’s first ever Citizens Assembly on climate change, where 108 people – selected to represent the country – were challenged about what we should do to meet our climate change goals.  The film follows 7 of them in some detail as they learn and think about what we might, as a society, do about the most pressing issue of our lives.

Most of these people were what you might see as "ordinary".  That is, as the sort of people that you and I (as ordinary people ourselves) might know or come across in the daily run of things.  What struck me was their openness and honesty about their lives and what they were being asked to do.  There's more detail here, and the outcome – their report – is here.

I did wonder whether schools might find this film of use, but decided not.  What school students surely need is exactly what the 108 people got: a course on climate change and what we might do.  The climate assembly members had the huge advantage of having the course delivered by the country's experts on science, behaviour change, etc, and led by expert facilitators.  School students cannot expect such a direct science expertise-led experience, although they do have smart facilitators (their teachers) on hand to aid their learning.

So, maybe there needs to be another film where the science (etc) is explained and explored and where there are opportunities embedded for discussion.  There is, of course, no shortage of stuff out there about climate change, but I'm talking about content that is as carefully set out and structured as seemed to be what the citizens assembly was presented with.

DfE might commission such a film, but it won't.  It thinks that it already sets out an adequate course on climate and climate change through the national curriculum and exam courses, and has no interest in helping students consider what we might do about it.  Given this, who's going to do it?


Posted in: Comment, News and Updates


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