Teach the Future / Climate in the Curriculum

Dear Constituent,

Thank you for contacting me about climate change and the curriculum.

The environment is an important part of the national curriculum, with the fundamental concepts taught at primary school, before progressing to a higher level of awareness and understanding at secondary school.

For instance, in primary school science, pupils are taught to observe climate changes across the seasons, including the weather, and they look at how environments can change as a result of human activities. In secondary school science, pupils are taught about biodiversity, ecosystems, the atmosphere and the carbon cycle, as well as about the production of carbon dioxide by human activity and the effect this has on the climate.  

Science GCSE gives pupils the opportunity to consider the evidence for additional anthropogenic causes of climate change. Furthermore, a new environmental science A Level was introduced in 2017 which will enable young people to study topics that will enhance their understanding of climate and how it can be addressed.

The geography curriculum at Key Stages 3 and 4 includes content designed to enable pupils to understand ways in which human and physical processes interact to influence and change the climate, as well as environments and landscapes. It also includes content on the change in climate from the Ice Age to the present day. GCSE geography gives pupils an opportunity to consider the causes, consequences of and responses to extreme weather conditions and natural weather hazards.

More broadly, I was pleased that the manifesto I stood on pledged further action on climate, including a pledge to invest £9.2 billion in improving the energy efficiency of our homes, schools and hospitals.

Thank you again for taking time to contact me.