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Beyond the Climate Strike: Students Supporting the Planet

The Burnaby School District is deeply committed to sustainability and is proud of the leadership role that students are taking on this pressing global issue. While we’re supportive of the efforts of children and youth to build awareness about climate change and be involved in their community, September 15 – the day of the Global Climate Strike – will remain a regular instructional day.

Topics of climate change and sustainability are embedded within the curriculum, and events in the news, such as this protest, often spark conversations and learning within classrooms. Should parents or guardians wish to excuse their child in order to attend the Global Climate Strike, we ask that they notify the school of their child’s absence, as they normally would. Additionally, the District will support staff who wish to take students on a curricular-related field trip; standard policies and protocols regarding field experiences must be followed.

There are many examples within our District of outstanding and often award-winning environmental efforts by Burnaby students.

  • The District’s student-led Burnaby Youth Sustainability Network (BYSN) hosts an annual conference on environmental issues. At the end of the last school year, the students held their first Climate Project Challenge. Elementary and high school student-initiated proposals to improve sustainability were funded through a partnership with Simon Fraser University. Learn more. Read about it in the Burnaby Beacon news story.
  • Additionally, two student leaders from BYSN earned City of Burnaby Environmental Awards for work in their schools. Caio Conradt is president of the Earthwise Club at Burnaby Mountain Secondary and leads environmental awareness work. Ziya Merchant from Burnaby South Secondary launched a campaign called Phase Out Plastic Bottles. See the City of Burnaby announcement. Read more.
  • Caio Conradt was also named a Top 25 Environmentalist Under 25 in Canada for his sustainability work at school. Learn more.
  • Youth Hub students won first in a province-wide contest after developing a broad-based recycling campaign. Learn more in the Burnaby Beacon news story. Read more.

See more examples of sustainability efforts across the Burnaby School District here. Additionally, the District has a Sustainability Strategic Plan that sets out goals, objectives and specific actions to mobilize our efforts. Read the plan here.


Posted September 12, 2023