Missouri Environmental Education Association

Helping educators inspire Missourians to care about, understand and act for their environment since 1997.

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"I wanted to know the name of every stone and flower and insect and bird and beast. I wanted to know where it got its color, where it got its life - but there was no one to tell me."
George Washington Carver

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Header Picture Captions: Left to Right: Friends of Rock Bridge Memorial S.P. Nature Detectives, Summer 2010; Academie Lafayette, Kansas City, Stream Class; Sustain Mizzou Green Team recycling at an MU home football game, Columbia. If you have pictures of your students learning aout or working in the environment (with permissions) send them to weaverjc@missouri.edu and we will post them.

MEEA News - News about MEEA

2015

January (go to news)

Board Actions. The board set a regular time for conference calls for this year - 2nd Tuesdays at 6:00 pm. Liz Petersen organized a meeting to discuss the fall conference on Saturday March 7.

MELAB Updates. Set the date and location of the next MELAB meeting, Thursday May 7, 2015 at Runge Conservation Center (thanks to Kevin Lohraff for reserving the space!0.

Director's Report. EPA Quizzes:Questions on Human Health and the Environment posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml#humanhealth. Met twice with the Conservation Federation of Missouri Outdoor Action Committee to help plan the Missouri Outdoors Summit. Contacted 200+ people about the summit, including representatives of local YMCAs, Optimists and Rotary Clubs. Sent membership reminders to members whose membership was due. Met with Missouri River Relief to discuss a joint application for an EPA Education Grant.

February (to MEEA March 2015 Newsletter)

Board Actions. The board confirmed the date and location of the 2015 MO EE Conference: Saturday October 10 at the College School in St. Louis. The board authorized Jan Weaver to sign documents on its behalf with prior approval. The board received updates on the MO River Relief EPA grant, on the Missouri Outdoor Summit, and on the NAAEE Conference in San Diego this year.

Membership. Current membership (includes folks 3 months past due) is up to 136, or 44% above last year's membership at this time.

Director's Report. EPA Quizzes: Questions on Critical Resources posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml#criticalresources. Worked with the Conservation Federation of Missouri Outdoor Action Committee to line up speakers for the Missouri Outdoors Summit. Prepared, printed and mailed the annual membership directory. Completed and submitted paperwork for MEEA's participation in the Missouri Environmental Fund's workplace giving program. Collaborated with Missouri River Relief on a joint application for an EPA Education Grant. Presented at Interface: "Engineering a Greener School".

March (to MEEA April 2015 Newsletter)

Board Actions. Minutes of March 10 meeint: Formal Conference Committee set up - Liz, Mary, Susan, Carey. Discussion of possible speakers and settling of honorarium of $250. Children's Bill of Rights - Susan agreed to bring this up at the next MELAB meeting. Certification - Jan and Carey discussed this at the Interface Meeting, currently considering Praxis style quizzes for a fee covering different content and skill areas, plus a mixed, online and in-person workshop, plus other opportunities. Need to figure out a budget. Discussed setting up a grants and awards committee, Jan will follow up on this. Approval of Earth Day Fundraiser MEE 4-22 Campaign - see below

Membership. Current membership (includes folks 3 months past due) is up to 113, down 17% from last month. Facebook- 242 Friends. 211 Page Visits.

Director's Report. EPA's Quizzes: Questions on Energy posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml#energy. Participated in the Missouri Outdoors Summit, including making a short presentation on the Urban Populations Outreach Program. Collaborated with Missouri River Relief on a joint application for an EPA Education Grant. Received human subjects research approval for the Environmental Behavior Style Survey project with Cheryl Hardy. Launched the MEEA 4-22 Fundraising Campaign, donations to date are $598 from 19 donors (~19% of solicitation letters sent). Jan contacted Cheryl, Ethan and Alex about being on Grants and Awards committee, which all agreed to do.

2014

December 2014

MEEA Board Email Votes - Present: Karen Armstrong, Susan Flowers, Mary McCarthy, Liz Petersen, Tana Pulles, John Sode. The board passed budget and approved contracts for Executive Director Jan Weaver and Accountant Jan Thompson. See budget here. Motions moved by Liz Petersen, seconded by Mary McCarthy. Passed unanimously.

Final MEEA Environmental Educator Grants awarded to Southern Boone County Learning Garden, Noel Elementary School and Friends of Rock Bridge Memorial State Park

Missouri Environmental Literacy Advisory Board Meeting December 4, 2014, Campus Facilities Building, MU Campus. Presentations by City of Columbia Sustainability Office, Midwest Recycling, Missouri State Parks, Missouri Stream Team Watershed Coalition, MU Sustainability Office - Energy Projects, plus a whip round of attendees. Break out groups worked on promoting recycling statewide, compiling a list of activities for children and youth, and planning implementation of a Missouri Green Schools program. more

Manager's Report. EPA Quizzes Biodiversity and Habitat Loss questions posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml. The next set of questions, 130+ on Human Health are posted for review in the January Newsletter. I coordinated the semi-annual Missouri Environmental Literacy Advisory Board meeting.

November 2014

MO Environmental Education Conference. The annual conference was held at Columbia College in Columbia MO on Saturday November 8. There were 18 presentations and 41 attendees. Check out the program and other aspects of the conference here. At the conference lunch, MEEA presented awards to Missouri Environmental Educators and recognized Carey Scherder for renewing her certification. The lunch also featured the first annual EnviroQuiz, our new fundraiser, which raised $180.

Missouri Environmental Education Awards for 2014. Nancy Schnell of St. Louis received the Environmental Educator of the Year Award. The City of Columbia's Power and Light Department received the Organization Award. Jay Barber received the Lifetime Environmental Educator Award.See more about the MEEA Awards at http://www.meea.org/aboutmeea.shtml#awards

MEEA Members choose new President Elect and Board Members. MEEA members voted this November to elect Mary McCarthy of Springfield as the new President Elect/Secretary (to become Board President next year) and Alex Dzurick of Columbia, Cheryl Hardy of Columbia and Carey Sherder of ----- for two year terms (January 2015 - December 2016) on the MEEA Board. Continuing Board members include Elizabeth Petersen of St. Louis as this year's Board President, Susan Flowers as Treasurer, and Ethan Duke as Board Member (January 2014 to December 2015). There are two open 1-year terms on the MEEA Board, if you are interested in serving, please contact Jan Weaver at weaverj@missouri.edu

MEEA Board Meeting November 7, 2014, Columbia Missouri. MEEA Board Members Susan Flowers, Mary McCarthy, Elizabeth Petersen and John Sode (by phone) met before the MO EE Conference to review the proposed 2015 budget. There was no quorum so the board decided to defer a vote on the budget to the next meeting or to decide by email. Other items included an offer by John Sode to do a column from the perspective of a teacher for the monthly newsletter.

2015 MO EE Conference Planning. Elizabeth Petersen and Susan Flowers have arranged for the 2015 Conference to be held on Saturday October 10 at the College School in St. Louis. Carey Scherder is working with Steve Mahfood on arranging a keynote speaker. Save the Date!

Manager's Report. EPA Quizzes Air Pollution questions posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml. The next set of questions, 127 on Biodiversity and Habitat Loss will be posted for review in the December Newsletter. Conference. I handeled registration and logistics for the MO EE Conference with lots of help from Cheryl Hardy, our host at Columbia College as well as from board members Elizabeth Petersen, Susan Flowers and Mary McCarthy. Governor's Natural Resources Conference November 13-14, Springfield. I attended and tabled at the conference, participating in the breakout sessions on education. The attendees selected the priority issues for Missouri for the next few years, see a copy of those priorities here.

October 2014

MEEA Board Meeting October 15, 2014 (by phone) minutes
ProProfs - approved $480 for ProProfs on-line quiz software, with provision that decision will be revisited next year to see if it is used and cheaper alternatives will be investigated; Approved Nominees for MEEA Award; Approved Slate of Nominees for 2015 Board; Next Meeting set for Friday November 7; 2015 Budget presented by Jan Weaver for board revie; Conference Updates

Manager's Report. EPA Quizzes: Waste Water questions posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml. The next set of questions, 135 on Air Pollution, will be posted for review with the November Newsletter. Science Teachers of Missouri meeting in St. Louis:
What do Engineers Do? solve open-ended problems ingeniously - fill in blanks, measure, ask questions, have background sheets with steps for solving, systems that are being worked with,

North American Assocation for Environmental Education meeting in Ottawa: networked with other statewide EE associations during the affilate workshop; session notes

    EE Certification in PA, KT, CO and UT - FEES need to cover costs, provide value to customers and be in a range customers can afford; COSTS are affected by goals, design, administration, partners who can cover costs and numbers served, more participants cuts the per person administrative costs. Fees usually in range of $100, way below incurred costs

    1. PA - Portfolio, Praxis, Reflective Essays, Workshops, costs are $6,000 to $10,000 in in-kind contributions
    2. KT- 4 workshops, 20 students per workshop, costs are about $45,000 per year in agency time and donations/grants from Carhart and Toyota
    3. CO - Portfolio that shows evidence of mastery, optional on-line course $1,500
    4. UT - Portfolion, 2 online courses taught through the University of UT, Portfolio has rubric, three reviewers who went through process, 2 levels of certification

    Marketing - infographic road map of process, word of mouth, email
    Value - networking in course, skills, nationally networked if program is accredited
    Comparison to other kinds of Certification - Search and Rescue 4 courses at $55 each, 3 tests at $55 each; NAI $355 to $380; Wilderness Certification $620 to $1400

    Community EE Strategy Wheel - environmental actions proposed by environmental organizations don't necessarily seem relevant to low income urban populations, instead need to proceed from neighborhood needs to stewardship actions - needs include unemployment, crime, gangs, poverty, lead poisoning, dropouts, illiteracy, graffiti, mental illness, truancy, broken families, slum housing, drug abuse

    Peak Performance in Non-Profits - key ideas - clear and defined mission, strategic plan with 3 to 5 year priorities, designing program around audience needs, grow deliberately, avoid mission creep

    Footholds for Embedding EE in PreService Programs - not that relevant or useful to our situation

September 2014

MEEA Board Meeting September 17, 2014 (by phone)
There was no quorum so the board members present discussed progress on awards and recruiting nominees for next year's board.

Other board actions: Susan Flowers approved invoice for accountant for 2nd quarter report and 990 by email.

Manager's Report. EPA Quizzes: Solid Waste questions posted at http://www.meea.org/quizzes.shtml. The next set of questions, 125 on Water Pollution will be posted for review with the October Newsletter. Association of Missouri Interpreters Meeting: Assisted with the annual workshop in Sedalia to strengthen ties to the organization. Science Teachers of MIssouri: Attended conference in St. Louis and presented on "Taking a Field Trip at Your School" as well as networking and attending sessions on integrating engineering into lessons. MEEA Conference: Set up website for registration, but still need to work out kinks. Confirmed conference presenters. Need to identify someone to open the conference. Grants: Sent reminders about the EE Grant deadliine. D & O Insurance; Heard back from State Farm, but their bid not substantially different from ones received before. Probably need to go at it again.

August 2014

MEEA Board Meeting, August 7, 2014 (by phone) minutes
Present: Ethan Duke, Susan Flowers, Mary McCarty, Elizabeth Petersen, Tana Pulles, John Sode
Ex Officio: Jan Weaver

Board Actions - IRS 990: Approval of 2013 990 - moved by John, seconded by Susan, approved unanimously; Awards: Discussion of candidates for awards; Board Candidates: Discussion of candidates for the board; Educator Grant: Review of work by Tana and Mary on the Environmental Educator Grant and Rubric, Jan will start promoting it; Conference: Review of recommended budget for the upcoming fall conference and registration fees; MOBCI Grant: Approval of request from MOBCI to assist with distribution and promotion of their grant for bird habitat education - moved by Mary, seconded by Ethan, approved unanimously; Children's Bill of Rights: Consideration of Children's Outdoor Bill of Rights, Elizabeth, Mary and Susan will review and revise for MO, bring the document to the membership at the November meeting http//www.calroundtable.org/files/Research%20Bibliography%20COBR%202012%20%20(3).pdf ; AMI Donation: Approval of $100 for AMI Workshop in September- moved by John, seconded by Susan, approved unanimously.

Manager's Report. EPA Grant: Received a second extension on the 2011-2013 EPA grant for building capacity for EE in Missouri. The extension will run from November 1, 2014 to October 31 2015. The work that will be completed is writing 1,200 multiple choice questions, 300 for each grade band (k-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12) on environmentally related topics and posting them on the web. As of now, 120 questions on solid waste issues have been written. They will be released for comment, revised and reposted at the end of September. Conference: The deadline for submissions for the interactive formal presentations has closed, the conference committee will review presentations and make their decisions in the next week. Submissions for the mini-resentations and table talks are still open. Grants: Submissions for the MEEA Environmental Education Grant are open. MEEA is also assisting the MO Bird Conservation Initiative with distribution of information about their grant. Board Meetings: the board agreed to have conference calls on third Wednesdays at 5:30 pm. Missouri Environmental Fund: Formerly Earth Share, the board of MEF decided to withdraw from the national Earth Share campaign and focus on giving in Missouri. Jan went and tabled at the State Coordinated Campaign meeting for organizers to share info on MEF.

July 2014

MEEA Board Meeting, July 10, 2014 (by phone). minutes
Present: Karen Armstrong, Susan Flowers, Mary McCarthy, Elizabeth Petersen, Tana Pulles. Ex Offico: Jan Weaver

  1. Recorded email votes from previous months
    1. January - applying for EPA Region 7 grant
    2. April - participate in Earth Day Fundraising event
    3. April - moving website
  2. Board approved 2013 financial statement
  3. Board approved 2014 1st Quarter financial statement
  4. Conference - endorsed conference location and date, discussed and endorsde EnviroQuiz as the fundraiser
  5. Grants & Awards - Tana and Mary will be responsible, Jan will update Grants information, board approved providing 1 free registration to each grant recipient (from 2013) to present
  6. D&O Insurance - Elizabeth will look into getting an application
  7. IRS 990 - Elizabeth and Susan agreed to review the 2013 990 and adivse the board on accepting and submitting it.
  8. Nominations - The board discussed possible nominees

Manager's Report. The MEEA website was moved to a new server- SiteGround - on the advice of our present host.The Conference Committee (Susan Flowers, Elizabeth Petersen and Jan Weaver) met and looked at Columbia College as a location for the annual conference and agreed to use the college and set the date for Saturday November 8. A conference website was set up, along with a site for online submission of proposals - http://www.meea.org/Conferences /2014EEConference/2014EEConference.shtml. An application for a D&O Insurance quote from State Farm was sent in. An application for new state Sales Tax letter was sent in. Presentation proosals for STOM and Interface were sent in. The propsal sent to NAAEE for the Ottawa Conference was accepted.

June 2014

EarthForce Grant. Last year MEEA received an EarthForce grant to collaborate on building EE communities in Missouri. EarthForce had awarded funds to three consortia, two in St. Louis and one in Columbia to foster youth leaderhship in environmental issues. Our primary responsibility was to connect with these recipients and support their work. Our last activity was soliciting proposals from the consortiat participants to continue their work. We received three proposals and distributed $1,250 to each. The projects were Columbia Center for Urban Agricultures BGreen School Projects, Youth Champions 4Sustainability Sweet Potato Project (St. Louis) and a St. Louis Science Center Field Trip.

Organizational Maintenance. A quiet month, programmatically speaking. The manager spent time organizing files and ensuring there were copies of minutes and financial documents in the right place as well as doing the monthly newsletter.

May 2014

MEEA, Kansas City EE and Kansas EE leaders meet. On May 15, Jan Weaver met with Matt Riggs from the KC Environmental Education Network and Laura Downey from KCEE to explore ways that the three organizations can work more closely on shared goals in the KC area. The discussion covered using Kansas's green schools resources as a model for a similar Missouri program and the possibility of a joint conference in the KC area sometime in the future.

MEEA survey looks at HOW folks help the environment. At Columbia's Earth Day Festival (postphoned to May 4 because of weather) MEEA surveyed over 140 festival goers about their "Environmental Style". The survey effort aimed to try out an environmental behavior survey MEEA and the MELAB (the Missouri Environmental Literacy Advisory Board) are putting together to survey H.S. students about their environmental actions. The survey focused on how people act to help the environment, by personal action, how they spend their money, their willingness to learn about issues and/or their willingness to work with a group. A fifth option was a non-judgemental "I need to know more before I act". Obviously Earth Day Festival goers are not a random sample. That said, almost everyone took at least one action on one of the seven items presented. Most people took personal action, followed by spending money. The third and fourth most common actions were learning more and working with a group. Jan Weaver is working with MEEA members Cheryl Hardy, Jim Jordan and MELAB member Kevin Lohraff to get the survey in shape for wider distribution.

April 2014

MEEA board approves moving website to new host and setting up a Missouri Green Schools page. In an email vote, the board approved two related motions. First, the MEEA website will move to a new host recommended by our current provider. The web address will remain the same and there should be no to minor interruption of access during the transition. Also, the board approved setting up a separate Missouri Green Schools page that will collate information on green schools and be a resource for Missouri schools wanting to go green. The motions were moved by John Sode and seconded by Elizabeth Petersen, with Sode, Petersen, Susan Flowers, Mary McCarthy, Tana Pulles and Ethan Duke in favor and three abstaining.

In the first annual Earth Day fundraising event, MEEA raised over $200 from its members for environmental education efforts. The MEEA board voted by email to approve participation: John Sode moved and Susan Flowers seconded, wth Sode, Flowers, Elizabeth Petersen, Mary McCarthy, Karen Armstrong and Ethan Duke, in favor and three abstentions.

March 2014

Semi-Annual MELAB Meeting March 13, 2014 -http://www.meea.org/melab/meeting_march2014.shtml#notes

MIssouri Nature Playbook - Jan Weaver drafted a2014 Missouri Nature Playbook (info for the career pipeline for distribution). This was Goal 2 of the Environmental Leadership and Career Awareness work group. The playbook gathers together the information on programs that are throughout the state and for ages preK to college. The draft has been sent out to MELAB.

Stewardship Style Survey - Jan Weaver held a second meeting with Cheryl Hardy of Columbia College to plan Stewardship Survey in more detail. Instead of asking if students are willing to do something for the environmet, we will ask how they would like to address an environmental issue, their style of stewardship. Also, informal surveys of teachers indicated greater willingness to give a survey in the fall than in the spring. Additional work, checking human subjects research requirements to ensure privacy is not violated, digging into issues like validation, and rewriting questions to fit new survey approach.

Association of Missouri Interpreters Workshop Planning - MEEA is helping AMI with planning the September 14 to 16 Workshop in Sedalia.

Outdoor Action Kommittee (OAK) Meeting - MEEA is participating in the Conservation Federation of MIssouri's OAK group on the education subcommittee. At the most recent meeting we discussed an education summit to be held next March in conjunction with their annual meeting.

 

February 2014

EarthShare Application submitted - EarthShare is a workplace giving program, kind of like United Way for environmental projects. Every year MEEA completes an applicaiton that allows us to be part of the campaigns Earth Share conducts at workplaces throughout the state, including federal and state offices. The application includes information on the number of members and where they are located, a copy of our most recent IRS 990 (that is the form that non-profits file), and statements about what we do. Participation in EarthShare typically brings in $800 to $1200. If your workplace has EarthShare, please consider contributing! Learn more about EarthShare of Missouri

Directory completed - The annual directory has been compiled, printed and mailed. MEEA has 111 members in good standing, including five organizations.

Presentation at Missouri Natural Resources Conference - This year MEEA worked with MDC and Project WET to organize a session on giving presentations for diverse audiences at the annual Missouri Natural Resources Conference. This conference is for resource professionals. Most attendees work for state and federal agencies research the states natural resources and wildlife. However, occasionally they are called on to give presentations, so our session was designed to give them some tools for presenting. Regina Knauer, MDC, presented on Discover Nature Schools, Melanie Carden-Jessen, MDC, presented on how to engage listeners, Erica Cox, Missouri State University, presented on the Projects, and Jan Weaver, MEEA, presented on the Common Core and Next Generation Sciens Standards and on classroom management strategies. Download "A Geography of School Standards" and "8 Effective Classroom Practices".

Presentation at Interface - Jan Weaver presented for MEEA at Interface A, providing a session called "Taking a Field Trip at Your School". The session used environmental audit sheets from PLT, National Wildlife Federation and Kansas Green Schools to create three mini-field trips, one investing school water use, one investigating school energy use and one investigating how friendly the grounds are for wildlife. Participating teachers collected and analyzed data and made a recommendation about what the school could do to be more environmentally-friendly. Then they prepared a mini-poster with data in a table or graph of the data they collected, the recommendation that followed from the data and an illustration. Download "Taking a Field Trip at Your School.

January 2014

MEEA 2014 Budget - approved by the board at the November 2013 meeting

# REVENUE  
400 Contributions and Gifts $6000
410 Certification $0
425 Membership Dues & Assessments $1200
430 Special Events - Conference $1200
440 Special Events - Fundraisiers $300
450 Earth Share of Missouri

$1000

495 Investment Income - Savings, Checking $100
496 Other Income $0
499 Unrealized Gain/Loss on Investment (CFO) $2500
  TOTAL REVENUE $12,300
     
  OPERATING EXPENDITURES  
  PEOPLE TEAM  
510 Postage, Permits, P.O. Box $150
520 Website $460
530 Directory $100
560 Envirothon Grant $500
570 Education Grants $1500
580 Award Plaques $150
     
  RESOURCES TEAM  
620 Accounting Services $1000
     
  PURPOSE TEAM  
700 Certification $30
710-770 Conference - Space ($250), Insurance ($110), Food ($600), Promotion ($200), Supplies ($40) $1200
790 MELAB $400
     
  GOVERNANCE TEAM  
800 North American Association for EE Membership $200
810 NAAEE Conference, Travel, Lodging for 2 $2000
820 Board Expense for Travel, Food $500
850 Board Insurance $1300
     
  STAFF  
900 Salay $2400
910 Payroll Taxes $410
  TOTAL EXPENDITURES $12,300
     
  CHANGE IN NET ASSETS $0

 

EPA Grant Recipients file final reports- Back in December 2012 six environmental education groups in Missouri received funding for innovative projecs to begin in 2013. Below are summaries of the final reports that have been submitted to date.

  1. U.S. Green Building Council - Missouri Gateway Chapter - $5000 for St. Louis area green school teams
  2. Earthways Center of Missouri Botanical Garden - $3000 - four St. Louis area professional development workshops related to sustainability
    1. Biodiverse City Institute - canceled due to low registration
    2. Energy Institute - canceled due to low registration
    3. Foodology for Schools: Let's Grow! - 140 registrants from 30+ schools, districts and organizations came together to rethink food in their schools
    4. Sustainability Institute for P12 Educators - 85 registrants had a chance to learn about sustainability and interact with other educators
  3. Missouri River Bird Observatory - $3000 - for presentations and professional develoment workshops related to birds along the Missouri river
  4. Community Partnership of the Ozarks - $5000 - for a Springfield Schools air quality program
  5. University of Missouri: Show Me Nature - $5000 - for Columbia Schools student initiated projects
  6. University of Missouri St. Louis - $5000 - for assessment and evaluation workshops for environmental education certification - Needs assessmens suggests two or three workshops be offered each semester for non-formal educators. Needs for formal educators changed significantly due to introduction of new standards. Market analysis indicated interest in these topics:
    1. Volunteers or volunteer coordinators - overview of interpretation methods and tenets that focus on engagement and the affective domain
    2. Non-formal Staff - program evaluation and impact
    3. Teachers and School Administrators - connection to Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards

 

2013

December 2013

MELAB: MO Environmental LIteracy Advisory Board work

Association of Missouri Interpreter's Conference - Assisted AMI with choosing a venue and date for the 2014 AMI meeting as part of MEEA's outreach and coordination with other groups.

MEEA Educator Grants - Set up a new page and posted short descriptions of grant project

November 2013

MO EE Conference

The conference met its goals with attendance and cost. We had 47 attendees, and we were hoping for 40 to 50. Income from registrations was $915, and from the silent auction was $383 (thanks Fran!). The expense was $999.21 ($528.86 for food, $250 for space - a donation, $104 for insurance, and $106.35 for printing and postage).

We also met our goals with attendee interest and enthusiasm. Presenters were well received, with the main suggestion being more time for people to interact with them and try out some of their ideas. Folks also enjoyed the service project, the table talks and the short presentations.

See presenter abstracts at 2013EEConference

Environmental Educator Grants

MEEA started a mini-grant program to provide six $250 grants to educators (formal and nonformal) to assist them with environmental education projects. Grants were awarded in mid-November to these educators and projects:

  1. Sheila Anglin-Jordan, Webster University: Sustainability Course
  2. Andrew Goodin, Grand Center Arts Academy: Designing a Smart GrowLab
  3. Matthew Magoc, The Audubon Center at Riverlands: Building an Environmental Education Childrens' Library to Promote LIteracy
  4. Jessica Merricks, Blude Ridge Elementary School: Sustainable Practices at Blue Ridge - Composting in the Cafeteria
  5. Brad Riley, Fort Zumwalt North High School: Water Quality Testing
  6. Christine Schmidgall, Truman Elementary Outdoor Kids: Learning to Grow a Garden

See more at http://www.meea.org/meea_grant_recipients.shtml

MELAB: MO Environmental Literacy Advisory Board Meeting - Runge Center, Jefferson City

See more at http://www.meea.org/melab/meeting_november2013.shtml#notes

EPA Report - submitted the November 2013 EPA Report on the Missouri Environmental Education Capacity Grant. Objectives 1 & 2, setting up advisory boards is essentially complete and will continue with support of MEEA. Objective 3, a survey of school needs only had a 14% response rate. Results: curriculum is typically selected at the district level, most EE in schools is handled by individual teachers, EE is provided through field trips, speakers, projects and state-specific materials, things that would make it easier are aligned curriculum and funding, major barrier is teacher perceptions of EE. Objective 4, on-line assessments is just getting going and MEEA received an extension to finish this part of the project. Objective 5, library of lessons is complete with at least one lesson for each grade band and standard. A pdf of the report is available at EPA_Report_2013.11.30Below is a summary of the report

 

October 2013

Election Results:

MEEA Awards:

Manager's Report - Jan attended the annual North American Association for Environmental Education conference in Baltimore with board member and incoming president John Sode. A brief summary of some of the presentations and sessions attended is at http://www.meea.org/naaee/naaee2013.shtml. Jan also tabled at the Science Teachers of Missouri Conference in Columbia. A bid for Director's and Officer's insurance for $700 was received, with the requirement that MEEA also have General Liabilty insurance, about $600, in place. Jan continues to work with Eria Cox and the Department of Conservation to separate accounts for Project WILD and MEEA currently a the Conservation Credit Union. Planning for the 17th annual MO EE Conference also went forward.

September 2013

Educator grant program launched - In early September the educator grant website was set up, offering 6 grants of $250 each for formal and non-formal educators to help with environmental education. (Approved at the March 2013 board meeting)

Presentation on Common Core Math and ELA and Next Generation Science Standards at AMI - Jan Weaver presented at the annual Association of Missouri Interpreters meeting in Branson on the Common Core standards for Math and English Language Arts and on the Next Generation Science Standards. After a brief overview showing how the standards could fit together, she invited participants to take an existing lesson and show how the standards could be integrated into teaching an environmental or outdoor concept.

EPA grant progress. Of the four tasks outlined in the EPA grant received in 2011, the lessons page and the Missouri Environmental Literacy Advisory Board(MELAB) are well underway, with MELAB meeting again on November 14. The remaining tasks are the school principal survey and the assessments. The survey was revised and sent out a third time, by mail instead of email, in order to improve participation. Work on the assessments is moving very slowly. The formal grant period is almost up, but MEEA received an extension of a year to complete work on the assessments.

Conference. The presenters have been confirmed and the schedule and registration have been set up on the MEEA web page. Notice of the conference has been sent to all members and presenters, and posted on facebook.

Awards. The awardees have been notified and invited to the EE conference. Plaques have been purchased.

Nominees. The slate of nominees is almost complete. MEEA is still seeking nominees for treasurer.

Project WILD Funds. The Missouri Department of Conservation has transferred responsiblity for WILD to Missouri State University. Based on bank records, $10,000 initially deposited with MEEA to assist cash flow in handling WILD registrations and expenses, should be transferred to the program at MSU. The administrators at MSU have been contacted about the transfer and MEEA is waiting to hear back from them.

NAAEE Conference.. Jan Weaver and John Sode (President Elect) will be attending the NAAEE conference in Baltimore

Board Votes (by email) September 27, 2013. The board approved

  1. Reciprocal membership with the Arkansas EE Association,moved by Deb Ballin, seconded by Karen Armstong
  2. Complementary registration of Awardees at our conference (for one person),moved by Deb Ballin seconded by Karen Armstrong
  3. MEEA attending the Missouri Natural Resources Conference Feb 5-7 at Tan-Tar-A (registration $125 + food and lodging), moved by Karen Armstrong, seconded by Deb Ballin
  4. Joint payment of costs of on-line registration and payment software of $5 per month, payable to Jan Weaver, moved by Karen Armstrong, seconded by Deb Ballin

The following exec board members voted "yes" on all 4 motions:Fran Fry, Deb Ballin, Kim Garbs, Tana Pulles, Karen Armstrong, Pat Holloway, Jeremy Soucy. Abstentions: John Sode

August 2013

Nominees for 2014-2015 positions sought -The board has been contacting potential nominees for board positions. Members are encouraged to nominate individuals or themselves for board positions. To nominate someone, or to throw your hat in the ring, contact Jan Weaver. Positions and information about meetings is below.

Meetings (face to face usually in Columbia)
1st Saturday in November – face to face, short orientation at conference
1st Saturday in March – face to face to plan upcoming conference
2nd or 3rd week in July – face to face to make decisions about conference, awards, nominations and to plan next year's budget
Monthly conference calls as needed

Main business
Conference - planning, showing up and helping (March, July, Nov)
Approving contracts for manager and the accountant (Nov)
Approving grant applications (throughout year)
Selecting awardees (July)
Determining annual budget (July)
Promoting MEEA (throughout year)
Helping with Fundraising (throughout year)

Conference Update- Presenters have confirmed their commitment. Jan Weaver is putting schedule together and has purchased event insurance for the conference. She plans to have registration ready to go by mid September.

July

MO EE Conference Committee Meeting July 24, 2013 at Blue Ridge Elementary in Columbia - The board met with the local host, Jay Wiltshire, the principal and school staff to go over the presentation proposals and to discuss room assignments, food and other arrangements.

Board Meeting July 24, 2013 at Jan Weaver's home in Columbia - Board actions: approved $200 for a principal's survey, approved funds for registration and travel for two to the annual NAAEE meeting in Baltimore (approximately $2400), approved $479.64 for quiz software, approved $3000 to participate in an assessment opportunity with the other three states in EPA Region 7, discussed nominations for the board and for MEEA awards, discussed format for applications for a teacher gratn program and requested estimates for Board Insurance for the next meeting. Next meeting is a conference call, Tuesday August 27 at 7:00 pm. Minutes (unapproved) for July 24,2013

 

June

Board scheduled July 24 Meeting. Agenda items - 2014 Budget, Nominations, NAAEE travel, Assessment Opportunity, Conference Planning

Board Meeting June 25, 2013 by Conference Call - The board appointed board members to the conference committee and the grants committee, and proposed two motions for future board consideration 1) sending two representatives from the board to the North American Association for Environemntal Education Conference in Baltimore and 2) joining the other Region 7 states in an opportunity to find schools and support their participation in environmental literacy assessments. The board will meet in person on July 24, at Blue Ridge Elementary in Columbia. June 25, 2013 Minutes

May

Three Missouri consortia awarded Building Communities grant by Earth Force and EPA.

The Building Environmental Education Communities Small Grants Program, administered by Earth Force and funded by the EPA, awarded over $ 50,000 to three consortia in Missouri to use environmental education to develop youth leadership skills. The grants program aims to build an environmentally literate citizenry by developing leadership skills in youth in low income and disadvantaged communities. Awards were made to consortia of multiple organizations whose plans addressed local environmental issues, addressed EPA priorities, aligned with Missouri’s environmental education plan and embraced youth leadership as a key strategy for solving environmental problems.

The Youth Environmental Leadership Program, or YELP will empower youth in the Wellston, Normandy and Pagedale neighborhoods in St. Louis County through service learning, environment education, and leadership-building. Participating youth will spend the summer examining and teaching environmental justice issues in their community, including the poor condition of Engelholm Creek, a local creek that is affected by illegal dumping and pollutants and is not currently considered a community asset. Participants will create an environmental action plan and present it to community members, environmental organizations, and policy makers. Consortia partners are the St. Vincent Greenway, the River Des Peres Watershed Coalition, the St. Louis Science Center and Beyond Housing.

The St. Louis Sustainable Villages Consortia will work with youth in the neighborhoods around Lewis Place in north St. Louis to address community issues of solid waste, pollution reduction, improving urban green space, clean water and access to environmental education for urban youth. Leadership skills will be developed by identifying and solving local programs working with environmental professionals in the area. Consortia partners are CV Green Technology, Open Space Council, Lewis Place Historical Preservation and St. Louis Torchbearers 2.

The BGreen Consortia will work with 4th and 5th graders In the Columbia Public School system to create healthy food systems and urban green spaces, and with pre-service teachers at the University of Missouri to develop capacity in environmental education and next generation science skills. Students will develop leadership skills by identifying, studying and addressing environmental problems in the community. Consortia partners are the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture, Show-Me Nature, Columbia Public Schools and Columbia Parks and Recreation.

In addition to the consortia, Earth Force awarded the Missouri Environmental Education Association $5000 to help consortia align with the Missouri Environmental Literacy Plan and to help connect the Missouri consortia with each other and with other consortia in EPA Region 7 (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska).

Earth Force is an international organization that works to revolutionize the way adults work with young people to address environmental problems by championing the role of young people and by building environmental service learning programs that put youth in control. The Environmental Protection Agency education initiatives provide national leadership to increase environmental literacy, the necessary skills to make informed decisions and take responsible action

St. Joseph educators recognized by MEEA for contributions to EE.

The Missouri Environmental Education Association (MEEA) honored the partnership between the Kit Bond Incubator and the St. Joseph School District's gifted program. The community-based service award recognizes the quality of education students are receiving about the environment.

"They put together a program for grades 3-6, primarily the grades 4-6 go through the program," said Deb Ballin, MEEA. "It allows them to experience what goes on in the environment. They also learn different skills as a scientist to be able to succeed in today's world."

The Kit Bond Incubator lab manager Debbi Wright and St. Joseph teacher Gwen Funk received the awards for their work in developing the program.

"Partnerships like the institute and the school district, we're able to provide a laboratory that's more like a working laboratory and totally different from a science lab at school and they get to see the real work techniques and skills that they may be using as an adult," said Wright.

The Environmental Education Service Award is handed out annually in Missouri.

view video of board member Deb Balling making the award at http://stjoechannel.com/fulltext?nxd_id=339772

Earth Force Grants awarded to MO organizations. (MEEA helped promote applications and evaluated submissions from other states). Five organizations were awarded Building EE Communities, three of the organizations were from Missouri :

  1. Tallgrass Teens--Blue Springs, KS
  2. St. Louis Sustainable Villages Consortium--St. Louis, MO
  3. Youth Environmental Leadership Program/Engleholm Creek--St. Louis, MO
  4. BGreen CoMO--Columbia, MO
  5. EE Community Connections in KCK--Kansas City, KS

March

MEEA Board approves Fall Conference location and format and details for a small EE grant application. March 10, 2013.

MEEA Board approves free Subscription Membership, 2013 Budget and applying for Earth Force Grant. February 20, 2013. At its recent meeting, the MEEA Board approved several key intitiatives. Based on experiences shared by other EE organizations in North America, Jan Weaver suggested offering a free Subscription Membership. It would make the monthly newsletter available for free to interested educators. They would still need to join to enjoy other benefits and to serve on the board.

The board also approved the 2013 Budget (see belowthis story). MEEA will actively seek donations from businesses, agencies and organizations to help support its operation. It also plans to support the winning Envirothon team with a grant to help with travel expenses, and pilot a grant for environmental education for educators.

The board also approved applying for a grant from Earth Force to work with a Missouri consortium providing environmental leadership education for youth to engage them in Missouri's Environmental Leadership Plan.

MEEA 2013 Budget

Deb Ballin rejoins the board. January 22, 2013. Board member SueAnn Wright was unable to complete the remainder of her 2 year term on the board due to her increased responsibilities with Envirothon in the KC area. Former president Deb Ballin indicated her interest in staying on the board and was added to the board by acclimation in an email vote.

Current board members include, President Kim Garbs, Secretary/President Elect John Sode, Treasurer Fran Fry, 2012-2013 Board Members Deb Ballin, Cathy Farrar and Pat Holloway and 2013-2014 Board Members Karen Armstrong, Tana Pulles and Jeremy Soucy.

MEEA sets date for 2013 Conference. January 4, 2013. The board selected Saturday November 2, 2013 as the date for its next Environmental Education Conference. The event will be held in Columbia.

2012

Over $90,000 in Small Grants Awarded for Environmental Literacy Initiatives in Kansas, Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska. December 31, 2012.

The Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education (KACEE) through funding from the US EPA is pleased to announce the award of over $90,000 in small grants to advance environmental literacy throughout Kansas, Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska.  KACEE is pleased to be partnering with the Iowa Conservation Education Council, the Missouri Environmental Education Association and the Nebraska Alliance for Conservation and Environmental Education support and provide small grants for projects that include environmental education professional development for teachers, service learning projects to create community gardens with high school students and connecting environmental education to Career and Tech Education, to name a few.  These exciting projects will begin implementation in January of 2013.    

Laura Downey, Executive Director of KACEE, said, “We have seen a dramatic increase in interest and efforts to ensure our children have the knowledge and skills to be actively engaged citizens who make informed and responsible decisions about their environment.  The state environmental education associations in KS, MO, NE and IA are so pleased to provide funding to support these exciting and innovative environmental literacy efforts in the region.”

The following organizations in Missouri have been issued funding awards for their environmental literacy projects:

Organizations that received awards in the other three Region 7 states are: Iowa - Linn County Conservation Board/Wickiup Hill Learning Center, University of Northern Iowa, Iowa Academy of Science; Kansas - Friends of Sunset Zoo, USD 112 Central Plains, Wyandotte, Mitford Friends, Kansas 4-H Foundation, Inc., Emporia State University: Distance Education, Sterliing High School-Environmental Science Program; and Nebraska - Prairie Loft Center for Outdoor and Agricultural Learning, The Groundwater Foundation, Doane College, University of Nebraska - Lincoln - Ruth Staples Child Development Lab, Gretna Public Schools, Keep Scottsbluff-Gering Beautiful, Community CROPS, Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium - Zoo Academy

The Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education, the Iowa Conservation Education Council, the Missouri Environmental Education Association and the Nebraska Alliance for Conservation and Environmental Education are non-profit 501 (c) (3), membership organizations  that support environmental education within their states.  KACEE and the partnering organizations are members of the Affiliate Network of the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE).  The Affiliate Network is an established system of state EE associations who regularly communicate, collaboratively plan and share resources with one another. 

MEEA hosts annual Missouri Enironmental Education Conference. December 13, 2012.

This year's conference in Columbia Missouri at the MU School of Natural Resources, featured presentations on a Mississippi River Curriculum, River Vision Leadership Project, demonstrating osmosis, Missouri species, climate science education, Missouri EE standards, the Common Core and Next Gen, classroom management, lesson plans from the Resourceful Schools Project and Learning from the Land: Prairie Landscapes.

Next year's conference is planned for the first Saturday in November. Save the date!

Missouri Environmental Literacy Advisory Board holds second meeting at DNR's LEED Certified Building. November 20, 2012.

On November 13, representatives from DNR, DESE, and over a dozen environmental organizations met at the Lewis and Clark Building in Jefferson City to work on environmental educaiton projects. The meeting started with a tour of the building's environmental features, and presentations from the Missouri Bird Observatory, Gateway Children Nature Connection and the Outdoor Action Committee convened by the Conservation Federation of MIssouri.

After lunch, participants broke into three work groups, picking up on topics selected at the March 13 meeting: 1) Messaging and Stewardship, 2) Standards and Assessment and 3) Careers and Green Schools. Each group identified next steps to work on until the next meeting, tentatively scheduled for March 12, 2013. See notes from the meeting here.

Groups interested in working on these projects should contact Jan Weaver at weaverjc@missouri.edu

Missouri Organizations Submit Grants to Region 7 Mini-Grant Program. October 31, 2012.

The EPA Region 7 States, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska, submitted a total of 44 grants in response to a Region 7 mini-grant request. The grant program will be awarding up to $92,274 in grants of $5000 or less, between 4 and 5 grants per state, between 16 and 20 total.

Reviewers from each of the four states will be evaluating and ranking proposals from outside their state to avoid conflicts of interest. Then the Region 7 Leadership Team will allocate funds based on reviewer scores.

Funding will be available in December, with projects anticipated to be started and completed in 2013.

MEEA Executive Manager Jan Weaver attends NAAEE Conference in Oakland CA. October 13, 2012.

Jan Weaver represented MEEA at the annual North American Association for Environmental Education Conference and at the NAAEE Affiliates Workshop. The workshop focused on business plan writing for affiliates, as well as providing an opportunity for affilates (MEEA is the Missouri Affiliate of NAAEE) to share tips and strategies. Attendance was covered in part by a $510 scholarship provided by EPA through the affilate network.

At the conference Jan attended sessions on certification, camp programs and green schools and gave a talk on the care and feeding of student organizations. She also participated in the Affiliate "cake walk" where affiliates provide desserts and information about their organizations following the vendor lunch.

Next year's conference will be in Baltimore MD in October.

MEEA Pursuing Region 7 Mini-Grant - September 29, 2012

MEEA has been looking to revise and update its certification program so that it can earn accreditation through the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE). The revised program will have a way to grandfather existing certification recipients under the new program, so no worries if you are working on or have a certificate.

The revision also has the goal of making it easier for educators to complete the requirements in a shorter period of time.

 

MEEA Revises By-Laws - September 29, 2012

At its July 15 board meeting, board members considered changing officer position descriptions and responsibilities and reducing the number of at large board members.

Instead of having a president-elect/president/past president position, a president-elect, secretary/president position was proposed. This would reduce the president's term from three years to two, which might make it easier for volunteers to commit to. Also, by serving as secretary, the president-elect would get up to speed more quickly on the projects MEEA takes on. This would also have the effect of reducing the number of officers from four to three.

The board also considered reducing the number of at-large board members from eight to six, with two year terms and three new board members elected each year. The total number of board members and officers would then be 9. This should reduce the burden of finding volunteers to serve on the board and reduce the difficulty of finding timew when everyone can meet.

The board confirmed the changes in an email vote September 18, 2012. The motion to change officer positions passed 7 yes, 1 abstain and the motion to reduce board members passed 5 yes, 2 abstain.

Region 7 awarded Comprehensive Small Grant contract from EPA - June 27, 2012

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded the Region 7 Environmental Education Leadership Team (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska) a grant to distribute small environmental education grants in the four state region.

The Leadership Team anticipates awarding up to $92,274 in grants of $5000 or less, between 4 and 5 grants per state.

Guidelines are here

MEEA Participates in Region 7 Assessment Summit - June 15, 2012

On June 11 - 13, MEEA joined other EPA Region 7 states (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska) in a workshop in Nebraska City, Nebraska to create a plan for assessing environmental literacy in High School students in each of theri respective states. A H.S. assessment is one of the requirements of the federal No Child Left Inside legislation.

Missouri's team included Debbie Brunner (DNR), Kevin Lohraff (MDC) , Matt Riggs (KCEEN)  (for one day), Ginny Wallace (Conservation Federation of Missouri – OAKs) Jan Weaver (MEEA).  Shaun Bates (MO DESE Science) also participated by email.

To determine what to asses the team used the North American Association for Environmental Education K-12 Guidelines to create a draft set of Environmental Literacy Standards for Missouri. Then they aligned these standards with Missouri's current Social Studies and future Science, Math and English Language Arts Standards and with the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agency Conservation Education Standards.

The plan for how to assess environmental literacy includes identifying current grade level expectations (GLEs) and course level expecations (CLEs) that Missouri is already assessing that measure environmental literacy and gathering data on student scores on these assessments. We will also look at scores on environmental questions on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NEAP) and if possible, scores of Missouri students on the AP Environmental Science test.

Long term objectives include incorporating more environmentally related questions in the Missouri assessments, and having Missouri adopt environmental literacy standards to help guide schools interested in incorporating environmental topics.

2011

MEEA wins EPA Environmental Education Grant- October 31, 2011

The Missouri Environmental Education Association just received a $31,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help coordinate environmental education efforts around Missouri, to improve connections to environmental education for classroom teachers and to develop assessments for environmental literacy.

The two year grant provides funding for MEEA to provide staff support for a State EE Interagency Committee comprised of representatives from state agencies, and a State EE Advisory Board comprised of organizations and businesses with a stake in environmental education.  MEEA hopes to build on the work already done to set up last year's Children in Nature initiative organized by a number of state agencies to identify other areas where joint efforts can yield benefits in environmental literacy and extend the model to organizations and businesses.

The third objective of the grant is to survey a representative group of school districts to find out what environmental education approaches are currently in place, and what barriers there might be to extending those efforts. The survey will include rural, urban, and suburban districts in all parts of the state.

The fourth objective is to set up a web-based clearing house of environmentally themed curricula and lesson plans, organized by grade level and topic.  There are lots of excellent materials, including some produced by the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Department of Natural Resources. However, there is not one place for teachers to find exactly what they need for a given topic and grade.

The fifth objective is to develop a question bank that covers multiple environmental topics at all grade levels. The question bank will be available in a web-based format that will allow teachers or individuals to download a quiz or to provide one interactively for students.  This will allow teachers to perform formative assessments of students' environmental literacy using tools aligned to state and national standards for environmental education. With permission from cooperating teachers, MEEA can compile scores and use them to generate an average environmental literacy score for Missouri students.

MEEA is looking for suggestions for what to include on the school survey, links to curricula and lessons and ideas for questions.   If you belong to an organization or business that has a region or state-wide stake in environmental education, please consider joining the Advisory Board.

Contact: Jan Weaver, weaverjc@missouri.edu

2005

2005 Missouri Summit on Environmental Literacy February 8-9, 2005 - MU Campus, Columbia, MO

You may have heard the word “summit” being tossed around lately, and you may be wondering what this is all about. Missouri is one of eight lucky states to have received grant funds through a program managed by the Environmental Education Training and Partnership (EETAP) program at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point and funded by the United State Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This funding has enabled MEEA to plan a variety of activities that include Regional Forums, internal assessment and reorganization, the MEEA Certification Program, and much more.

This flurry of activity over the last four years led us to the “EE Campus” event held October 29-31 in Columbia and on toward the Missouri Summit on Environmental Literacy coming up February 8-9, 2005. The idea for a Summit was hatched this time last year with the notion that all EE stakeholders should know what one another is doing, and to make sure we’re all pulling in the same direction, i.e., “building capacity.” A small group met in December ’04 and compiled a list of EE stakeholders, about 30 of which came to planning sessions on June 16 and October 29, 2004. We have hired Stacia Stelk to help us plan!

The main purpose of the Summit is to examine the 1994 “Report and Recommendations of the Governor’s Task Force on Environmental Education: Creating an Environmentally Literate Citizenry” to determine which objectives have been met, and what needs to be done next. We hope to come out of this Summit with a renewed sense of what we have accomplished in the past eight years and where we want to be ten or more years from now. If you want more information, contact Jim Lubbers at jim.lubbers@dnr.mo.gov or call 800-361-4827.

MEEA’s Environmental Education Certification Program: Participants Tell All! November 2005

In its 2nd year, MEEA’s Environmental Education Certification program has grown to over 90 participants, including 3 graduates. MEEA wants you to be a part of this success! This volunteer program recognizes formal and non-formal educators who have attained a certain level of proficiency in the field of environmental education. To find out about the benefits of the program directly from participants, read on!

Dianne Benjamin, Program Director – The Green Center, St. Louis

Why did you decide to join the certification program?

"I was walking through a prairie in western Missouri, hundreds of miles from home, on a class field trip in the fall of '01. Some fellow students explained how this amazing outdoor experience could count toward MEEA EE certification. I had been seeking a way to have fun while legitimizing my mid-life career transition from a bird-watcher and psychologist with an EdD to a trained environmental educator. EUREKA!

" What benefits have you received from the program so far?

"This statewide program has given me a professional identity and a home. I did not even know what to call myself or where I belonged. Now I know I am a non-formal environmental educator."

Jennifer Wellman, Outdoor Programs Specialist - The Girl Scouts, Kansas City

Why did you decide to join the certification program?

"I felt that the MEEA certification process would enhance my professional development in the environmental field. In addition, the requirements for the certification would increase my knowledge of environmental activities in Missouri therefore benefiting the girls I serve in Girl Scouts.

" What benefits have you received from the program so far?

"The program has validated many of the environmental programs that I develop and am involved in, and the program has allowed me to network with other professionals in the environmental field."

Jim Denner, High School Biology and Earth Science Teacher – Lindbergh High School, St. Louis

Why did you decide to join the certification program?

"To enrich my own understanding and involvement in environmental education, since I teach high school biology and earth science and to help with professional development. I think the district feels more secure in having someone teaching environmental issues who carries such a certification."

What benefits have you received from the program so far?

"I have incorporated a lot of new materials and ideas gleaned from MEEA conferences and projects that are included in the certification. For example, a lot of my freshmen had the opportunity to go to St. Charles to help Chad Pegracke do the "Big Muddy" clean-up last Autumn. They actually had fun spending a Saturday earning a little bit of extra credit as well as learning and participating in good environmental practice."

Amy Bhesania, MEEA Certification - Program Administrator

I am amazed at how quickly the Certification Program has taken off. The Certification Committee’s goals for the program in 2004 include increasing enrollment, diversifying the location and content of workshops as well as the number of workshops that count as credit toward the program. We also will increase communications between the Certification Committee and participants and expand opportunities for participants to network with each other. Congratulations to everyone involved in creating, administering and participating in the program!

2004

MEEA Receives $60,000 in Federal Funding to support its work through Sept. '05 Spring 2004

MEEA received two years of additional funding through the national Environmental Education and Training Partnership (EETAP). The grant will go toward assessing and updating a comprehensive plan for environmental education in MO, and will help MEEA develop a strategic plan for creating, increasing and promoting high-quality environmental education to a broad network. MEEA will receive $60,000 to support its work through September 2005.

The grant will help MEEA prepare for the Missouri Summit on Environmental Literacy scheduled for February 8 and 9, 2005, and complete an assessment of the 1994 “Report and Recommendations of the Governor’s Task Force on Environmental Education: Creating an Environmentally Literate Citizenry.”

“We will work to bring stakeholders and decision makers together to review changes in environmental education in Missouri over the past 10 years, and determine how to shape the future direction for environmental education in Missouri,” said Ollie Bogdon, MO’s EETAP Project Manager.

As part of its EETAP project, MEEA also will create an organizational strategic plan. “This plan will provide MEEA with the policy direction to increase its ability to manage multiple programs, as well as work with other stakeholders to meet statewide environmental education needs through comprehensive, sustainable initiatives,” said Bogdon.

Missouri and seven other states received financial support through EETAP, based at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. The National Environmental Education Advancement Project (NEEAP), one of eight national EETAP partners, manages the EETAP States Program. “We are excited to support MEEA’s efforts to lead the state initiatives for environmental education toward effectively meeting the common goals of environmental literacy.” said Jeremy Higgins, NEEAP Outreach Coordinator.

For more information about NEEAP or capacity building related activities, visit www.uwsp.edu/cnr/neeap

 

MEEA Certification Program Update August 2004

And the winners are… Olga Kilmer of Springfield and Marci Handley of Kansas City are the winners of MEEA’s Environmental Education Certification enrollment contest. Olga will receive a $50 gift certificate and Marci a $20 gift certificate from Acorn Naturalists for enrolling in MEEA’s Environmental Education Certification program between the dates of June 1 – July 31st, 2004. Congratulations and welcome aboard to all. A big thanks to Acorn Naturalists! Acorn Naturalists is an excellent educational resource for the trail and classroom. Check out www.acornnaturalists.com or call 800-422-8886 to find out more about the resources available.

Over the summer, certification enrollees explored Missouri’s environment and gained hours toward their certification. Several participants have moved closer to completing their certification. Keep up the great work!

As the daylight hours dwindle and our fall schedules fill up, this is a great time to look at gaining hours toward categories II (structured out-of-doors experiences) and III (resources/facilities). You don’t have to spend an entire day to gain hours toward your certification. There is no minimum requirement for category II and a 2-hour minimum requirement for category III. So take a Saturday morning to explore Missouri’s environmental resources and count it toward your certification. The hours can add up quickly!

For more information about the Certification Program, visit www.meea.org/certification.html. See you at the EE campus in the fall!