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WHRO Public Media and Governor Terry McAuliffe to Launch Expansive Environmental Education Initiative Across the Commonwealth

The Batten Environmental Education Initiative officially launched today with the debut of WHRO's Online Earth Science Course that will be available to all Virginia educators at no charge.

Speakers at the ceremony included Governor Terry McAuliffe, Bert Schmidt (WHRO), Dr. Melinda Boone (Norfolk Public Schools), and Steven Constantino (Virginia Department of Education).

WHRO Public Media and Governor Terry McAuliffe officially launched the Batten Environmental Education Initiative today at Norview High School in Norfolk, Virginia–debuting WHRO’s Online Earth Science Course, which will be available to all Virginia educators at no charge.

The Earth Science Course will allow students across the Commonwealth to gain an understanding of Earth Science and examine how human resources usage and other environmental issues impact the planet. The course will mark the official rollout of the Batten Environmental Education Initiative–an all-encompassing effort to develop and educate Virginia’s environmental stewards of tomorrow.

As Coastal Virginia is experiencing the highest rates of sea level rise on the East Coast of the United States, the Hampton Roads region is additionally the second most vulnerable population center in the country. In efforts to best prepare the next generation of Virginian citizens, the Batten Environmental Education Initiative will take place over the next three years with interactive content, student-oriented video series, an interactive mobile student lab and other learning opportunities. All elements will be distributed free of charge to all 132 public school divisions, 942 private schools and home school students throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.

“WHRO Public Media was founded by our region’s educators, and we are thrilled to be at the forefront of environmental education in Hampton Roads and throughout the Commonwealth,” stated Bert Schmidt, president and CEO of WHRO Public Media. “This Earth Science Course is a critical first step in the Batten Environmental Education Initiative, and we are honored to launch it with the support of Governor McAuliffe.”

Learn more about the Batten Environmental Education Initiative at whro.org/environment.


Sources: 1. “ Fact Sheet: Sea-Level Rise and Its Impact on Virginia,” World Resources Institute, wri.org 2. “ Climate Change Poses National Security Risks at Home and Abroad,” Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, c2es.org