Sarbanes, Fitzpatrick Reintroduce No Child Left Inside Act

Bill Would Support New, Hands-On Environmental Education Programs for Public School Students
February 11, 2015
CONTACT: Daniel Jacobs
(202) 225-4016

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressmen John Sarbanes (D-Md.) and Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) today reintroduced the No Child Left Inside Act (NCLI), a bipartisan bill that would bolster American students’ environmental literacy and encourage young learners to become dedicated environmental stewards.

The legislation was reintroduced in the U.S. House of Representatives with 35 original co-sponsors, and reintroduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.).

NCLI would provide federal grant funding for teachers who design and implement environmental education programs in, and importantly, outside of the classroom. By enabling new environmental curricula, the bill would also cultivate partnerships and strengthen relationships between school districts, colleges, environmental nonprofits, parks and other community-based organizations.

“Numerous studies show the positive effect of experiential outdoor learning on student development and academic achievement,” said Congressman Sarbanes. “However, many schools are forced to scale back or eliminate environmental programs because of budget constraints and the pressures of accountability systems focused on test scores. As Congress reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act this month, I look forward to working with my colleagues to advance NCLI and give educators the tools and resources they need to offer students environmental education programs across the country.”

“Promoting environmental education is a down payment on our future. Study after study shows that connecting kids to the world around them improves student achievement in science as well as reading, math and social studies – all which directly strengthen our future global competitiveness,” said Congressman Fitzpatrick. “I’m proud to once again work with Congressman Sarbanes on this common-sense bill that will inspire the next generation of doctors, scientists and engineers while ensuring we’re fulfilling our responsibility to promote environmental stewardship and conservation across the country.”

NCLI is backed by more than 50 million citizens – including supporters from across the political spectrum and in regions all over the country – in addition to more than 2,200 local, regional and national organizations in the No Child Left Inside Coalition, including the National Education Association, National Science Teachers Association, Sierra Club, League of Conservation Voters, National Wildlife Federation, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Outdoor Industry Association and hundreds of colleges, universities, businesses and health care organizations.