Support Integration of Climate Change into STEM Curriculum


Open to all RPCVs

Activity/project background

Partner: Department of Environment and Climate Change (DECC), Office of the President (Local NGO)

The project focuses on implementing the Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) 2030 – Guyana’s national strategy to mitigate against climate change and transition to a low carbon economy whilst advancing sustainable, economic development and improving livelihoods. While the success of the LCDS 2030 requires in part, skilled professionals, and well-equipped institutions, it is critical to impart strong awareness of the effects of climate change, and the actions to counter its impact on Guyana’s children and youth. Consequently, the strategy aims to support the delivery of climate and environmental education in schools. The project will support the National Centre for Educational Resource Development (NCERD) and the Ministry of Education to continue the review of school curricula to foster environmental stewardship, to cultivate environmental values and enhance knowledge in children and youth in recognition of the education vision of the LCDS 2030 to strategically embed climate change knowledge and actions in Guyana’s education system over the long term thereby enhancing the well-being of communities and the country.

NCERD seeks the support of a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to assist in the review of school curricula and to design educational materials that promote science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM); encourage practical learning exercises; build awareness on environmental issues; stimulate interest in environmental careers and advocate for environmentally-sound practices. It is anticipated that following this engagement, a Peace Corps Response Volunteer will continue the project with NCERD.

NCERD has not previously worked with a Peace Corps Volunteer or a VSPP. They understand that the role of a VSPP is very different than a two-year Volunteer.

Virtual service engagement and tasks

The VSPP will engage in the following tasks, in collaboration with their Host Country Partners:

• Co-review secondary-level STEM education curricula to identify areas to include climate change education and awareness and provide draft recommendations
• Co-draft additional information, sections, chapters that enhance climate change and awareness about climate change for inclusion in the curriculum

This engagement is expected to be approximately 16 weeks. VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-15 hours per week.

Meetings between VSPPs and Host Country Counterparts will take place during normal office hours, 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Guyana standard time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to Zoom and WhatsApp for regular communication and collaboration.

Per the Child Protection Code of Conduct, when engaging online with minors (0-18), two adults must be present.

Optional additional activities

The Peace Corps mission is to promote world peace and friendship by fulfilling three goals:

  1. To help the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women.
  2. To help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served.
  3. To help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

Goal 1 will be achieved through the VSPP's engagement and completion of the above tasks. The counterpart and VSPP may also choose to identify an activity that aligns with Goal 2. Additionally, the VSPP may identify a Goal 3 activity to implement during their engagement. See recommendations and tools for Goal 3 activities.

Essential qualifications

Education: Bachelor’s degree in any field

• Strong knowledge of the science of climate change and global climate actions
• 5 years’ experience and proven expertise in the development of educational material/curriculum for school-aged children

Intercultural skills and motivation: Flexible, strong cross-cultural agility, high tolerance for ambiguity, able to work independently, resourceful, creative, and genuinely motivated and capable to serve virtually

Desired qualifications

Education: Master's degree in natural resources management, environmental education, or related field

Technical Skills: Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication

• Specialization in climate and/or environmental sciences
• Knowledge and expertise in desktop publishing and preparation of multi-media material
• Experience in working in/with education systems in tropical forested countries

Terms and conditions of engagement

VSPPs will be engaging with the host country partner, in coordination with Peace Corps post staff, remotely from the US. They should have access to a computer, internet, and telephone in order to enable direct engagement with the Peace Corps overseas office and the Host Country Counterpart assigned by the host country partner.

Orientation with the host country partner will be provided, within the designated virtual service hours, during the first week of virtual service via an online presentation and discussion. The host country partner will provide an overview of its organization, the local context, and how they envision collaborating with the VSPP.

The VSPP will have regular check-ins with their counterpart and bi-weekly check-ins with Peace Corps staff. Spending unstructured time with counterparts can be critical to relationship-building and is encouraged through activities such as coffee chats and informal calls within the weekly 5-15 hours.

Engagement-specific safety and security

The VSPP will receive an orientation on Peace Corps’ Child Protection Policy and how it relates to online engagement along with IT security best practices. The VSPP will be expected to follow safety and security guidelines for online engagement to ensure their safety and that of the Host Country Partner and their counterpart, and any beneficiaries of the engagement.

Supervision requirements

The VSPP will report to a designated Peace Corps staff member. The VSPP will be expected to abide by the Virtual Service Pilot Participant and Donation Agreement and Participant Principles of Engagement. The VSPP will also be expected to check in with the designated host country counterpart as assigned by the host county partner.

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