Please sign our petition. Why? The Salmonids in the Classroom Program is an Oceans and Fisheries educational program with 30 years of funding. This funding unfortunately was cut completely. This program allows for classrooms in B.C. to raise Pacific salmon in our classrooms from egg to fry, then we release the fry into our local streams or creeks. I have participated in this program for 3 years, and my mother – Bev O’Connor – invested over 20 plus years in this program as a Vancouver school teacher.
We are Asking You to Send This Post Out to Five or More People!
Please sign our petition and please send this post and shout out 5 times! It could be 5 different: friends, family members, and colleagues through posts, tweets, pins, emails, texts, and any other platform you can think of and please urge them to sign the petition.
Here are some reasons why this funding should be back by a teacher – Norm Kaethler – at St. Georges School in Vancouver, B.C.
Salmon must be taught in schools. Salmon are essential to Canada’s and to British Columbia’s aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, to our economy, and to our cultural identity. Thus, our schoolchildren must be introduced to salmon in schools.
The program is widely used. Salmonids in the Classroom is run in over a hundred of classrooms in B.C. and the Yukon for over 30 years, directly influencing tens of thousands of students. Specialized infrastructure (tanks, filters, water chillers) are already in place in each school; a network of committed educators is also in place.
The program is effective and versatile. As a teacher, I value experiential and hands-on learning opportunities for my students. Raising salmon from eggs to fry in a tank in my classroom – and then ceremoniously releasing them in a local stream – offers an invaluable learning experience for my students. In my grade 11 and 12 classes, I use the salmon to teach a variety of topics, including developmental biology, sustainable fisheries, and First Nations culture and technology. The DFO’s own website provides a comprehensive list of learning outcomes from K-12 that this program provides: http://www.pac.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/education/resources-ressources-eng.html
The rationale for cancelling is misguided. To explain the program cancellation, the DFO cites “reallocations… to support Wild Salmon Policy, the Cohen recommendations, and the Fisheries Act Review.” However, the Cohen recommendations include education as the first pillar in compliance and enforcement of sustainable aquatic ecosystems. How can the DFO do its job of protecting salmon fisheries, if it does not have the support of an informed and sympathetic population?
Please contact the following people if you are interested in pursuing this issue farther!
Honourable Members of Parliament:
Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of DFO, email@example.com
Mel Arnold, Opposition Critic of DFO, Mel.Arnold@parl.gc.ca
Fin Donnelly, Opposition Critic of DFO, firstname.lastname@example.org
And your own MP
In conclusion, our Educator Coordinator Bev Bowler said this recently in an email:
“I know you have individually reached thousands of students with your message of caring and respect for salmon. This legacy is not lost.”
Please feel free to add comments, photos or thoughts on the comment space below!