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Trent University Chancellor to Chair Provincial Working Group on Environmental Education


March 1, 2007, Toronto

Trent University chancellor Dr. Roberta Bondar will chair a working group on environmental education as part of the provincial government’s new curriculum review process, education minister Kathleen Wynne announced today.

As part of an initiative to connect community leaders and education experts to curriculum development, the Ministry of Education announced a new curriculum council consisting of 11 community leaders and education experts from across Ontario, including Dr. Bondar. The council will advise the Minster of Education on curriculum issues that require broader public consultation.

Trent University president Bonnie Patterson was quick to salute Dr. Bondar on her decision to lead the development of this increasingly important area of school curriculum. “Renowned as a space scientist, neurologist, author, astronaut, and photographer, Dr. Bondar’s concern for the environment is equally well-known,” said Professor Patterson. “As an advocate for environmental protection, she has had the rare opportunity to view the Earth from space. Her several books of photography document some of the earth’s few unspoiled landscapes and are a passionate tribute to the remarkable ecosystem that supports life on this planet. She is uniquely qualified to take on this pivotal role.”

Now in her second term as Chancellor of Trent University, Dr. Bondar has always recognized Trent University’s strengths in Environmental Sciences. “Trent University is truly distinguished by both the caliber of its environmental teaching and research.” In accepting to chair the working group on curriculum development on the environment, Dr. Bondar said, ”We need to increase our knowledge of the environment and the understanding of the natural evolution of the planet and the impact of human beings on it.”

The significance of the working group was emphasized in today’s announcement from the Ministry of Education. The council’s first assignment from the Minister of Education will be to review how the environment and conservation is being taught in elementary and secondary schools. A report will recommend ways to better support the teaching of environmental education in Ontario schools.


For more information, please contact Marilyn Burns, director of communications, Trent University (705) 748-1303.