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Manchester Environmental Education Network

The values of Education for Sustainability

The National Curriculum states Education for Sustainability, ‘enables pupils to develop the knowledge, skills, understanding and values to participate in decisions…'

The values of Education for Sustainability are the basis on which all learning takes place. They are:

  • Active participation – so people can take the initiative and be responsible
  • Commitment to equality – between individuals, groups and societies 
  • Self esteem – in their personal, social and cultural value and potential 
  • Appreciation of common humanity – the needs and rights of all 
  • Rights and responsibilities – a commitment to defending human rights 
  • Empathy – an openness to understanding other viewpoints and feelings 
  • Concern for justice – being ready to work for a more just world 
  • Appreciation of diversity – to appreciate other cultures and social groups 
  • Ecological concern – a respect and sense of responsibility for the local and global environment 

These are values which can be explored by pupils, teachers and the whole school, and should underpin methods used in the delivery of Education for Sustainability.

For example, an Eco Committee can be set up to encourage active participation; the committee may want to ensure that everyone on the committee is treated equally; they may choose to take actions to protect their school environment in a global context, etc.

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