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District School Board of Niagara
Policy Education Programs and Student Services

D-10 Outdoor Education

Date Mar 2016
Review Mar 2021
The District School Board of Niagara (DSBN) is committed to the provision of opportunities for all students to experience learning in an outdoor natural environment. The DSBN recognizes the important role Outdoor/Environmental Education plays in helping our students develop critical thinking skills, stimulating innovation and imagination and encouraging students to stretch boundaries and take appropriate chances. Outdoor/Environmental Education encourages students to make personal connections to their world, and fosters environmental stewardship and sustainability.

Appropriate safety planning will always take place for any Outdoor/Environmental Education program.

Curricular Program

It is the policy of the DSBN to support Outdoor/Environmental Education as a valuable learning opportunity for students. The DSBN recognizes that the curriculum- linked and/or Outdoor/Environmental Education programs at the Walker Living Campus and the St. Johns Outdoor Studies Centre provides students a broad range of outdoor experiential learning opportunities. The Outdoor/Environmental programs offered at these facilities empower students through exploration and discovery to develop a connection to the earth. They stimulate creativity, imagination and innovation and they encourage the development of group skills such as effective communication, leadership and working together towards a common goal. Outdoor/Environmental Education at the DSBN's Walker Living Campus and St. John's Outdoor Studies Centre involves students in our natural environment in ways that develop environmental stewardship, encourage healthy living, and provide opportunities for students to develop skills in a variety of outdoor activities that enhance well-being and are environmentally sustainable. Implementation of these programs align to the Strategies and Actions as listed in the "Acting Today, Shaping Tomorrow" document.

Co-curricular Program

Involvement of students individually or as members of a group in co-curricular Outdoor/Environmental Education activities is encouraged. Outdoor/Environmental Education connects students to our natural environment in ways that encourage personal reflections, critical thinking, environmental stewardship and physical and mental well-being. The cost of a school-based Outdoor/Environmental Education program shall be the responsibility of the school involved. Provision shall be made by the school to obtain, repair and store equipment used for Outdoor/Environmental Education programs and activities.

Community Partnerships

The DSBN actively strives to develop community and post-secondary partnerships in order to enhance and expand Outdoor/Environmental Education opportunities for our students. Through these partnerships the District School Board of Niagara is able to enhance our Outdoor/ Environmental Education programs and give our students a greater variety of outdoor and environmental learning opportunities.