Local School Environmental Program Impassions Students

Come to understand a program that has been educating Marin youth about environmental issues for 17 years from the perspective of students experiencing its curriculum.


To move a society towards a positive and sustainable future, you must educate and empower its children.  In Marin, schools have begun to play a large role in this, teaching about sustainability through gardens, composting programs, and restorations.  At Sir Francis Drake High School in San Anselmo, juniors and seniors have the option of participating in the Studies of the Environment Academy - Drake Integrated Scholastic Curricula (SEA-DISC); a program that has been educating youth about the environment for 17 years.  


SEA-DISC is a family.  In high school, students often struggle to feel as though they fit. The small learning community offered by programs at Drake gives students the feeling that they belong somewhere. Through our tight-knit community, we help each other learn about the many environmental issues that plague the modern world, and become involved in different projects to personally make a difference. For over a decade, Sue Fox and Steve Bluestone have dedicated their careers to the program, opening their student’s minds to environmental studies. 


As a SEA-DISC student, you take US History, Environmental Science, and Chemistry one year, and Government/Economics, AP Environmental Science, and Internship the next.  Through the course of the year students also participates in 4 group projects that each have a different environmental focus and objective.  Over two years this covers sustainable agriculture, human population impacts, endangered species, water quality assessment, creek restoration, green energy, atmospheric crisis, and marine biology.  Learning about these issues through in-depth analysis in projects gives students a well-rounded view of global matters. Students develop their own opinions on these subjects, and a motivation that drives them to continue their activism in the future. 


After experiencing SEA-DISC, we have developed the firm environmental perspective that there is no other option but to implement sustainable practices and global consciousness.  It is not a debate – it is a necessity. Unsustainable practices deplete the countless resources that the Earth provides us and the numerous other organisms that we live amongst. So, looking forward we intend to dedicate our lives, as have our teachers, to environmental activism. 


Interning at Sustainable Fairfax, we hope, will be one of many positive experiences that allow us to impact local environmental issues. It is grass roots organizations like Sustainable Fairfax that make the many negative human impacts on the environment known and organize individuals to mend what has already been done and prevent future wrong doings. With the freedom to implement our own programs, we look forward to bringing sustainability to our peers so that they too can be impassioned as we have been. 


Other students in the SEA-DISC program are working at other local organizations to promote sustainability, pursuing topics that spike their interest. Had we not been given this opportunity as we have been, most of us would have never taken interest in environmental fields of study. It is this education about pertinent environmental issues that will protect the future of this world. Learn more at http://www.drakehs.org/academics/seadisc/index.html 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Sierra Salin February 02, 2013 at 04:56 PM
Great piece Jahya. Thank yous' for sharing your perspectives, and being interested in being stewards of a sustainable future.
Rachel McKay February 04, 2013 at 11:43 PM
Thanks Jahya, it is good to learn more about SEA-DISC and how it inspires you. As a fellow Sustainable Fairfax volunteer, I look forward to working and learning with you. I appreciate your dedication and enthusiasm.


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