USEE announces development of eeGuidance for Re-Opening Schools


For immediate release, July 1, 2020

Contact: Alex Porpora, , 407-267-2310

Utah Society for Environmental Education Announces Development of Guidance on Environmental & Outdoor Education in Utah 

  • Outdoor classrooms offer opportunities for schools and districts reopening amidst COVID-19
  • Environmental Education programs can help expand the classroom outside of the school building
  • Environmental educators and programs can support teaching and learning in challenging times

Salt Lake City, UT– The Utah Society for Environmental Education is announcing the development of eeGuidance for Reopening Schools in Utah, a new publication that will offer support for schools and districts as they find ways to safely reopen their schools to students this fall.  This document is being developed in collaboration with the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) and multiple local partners. The guidance will offer specific strategies for schools and districts, including using the school grounds for outdoor classroom spaces as a strategy for adhering to physical distancing guidelines, engaging community environmental and outdoor education programs as alternative spaces for learning, tapping into the expertise of environmental educators to support teaching and learning, creating healthier learning environments and supporting at-home learning.  

“Utah school districts and educators have done a tremendous job adapting to the Coronavirus epidemic. Our environmental education and outdoor education partners across the state are poised to assist schools as they develop their plans for the coming school year. Learning outdoors has a number of benefits and we are excited to work together to propose a number of strategies schools can implement in the fall,” says Alex Porpora, Executive Director of the Utah Society for Environmental Education. 

As stated in the draft eeGuidance, “These organizations can and should be essential partners in supporting schools and families as states begin to reopen schools. As with any strategy, these recommendations are not without hurdles, nor will they fully address all of the challenges facing schools. But environmental and outdoor education programs present some promising tools for schools and districts throughout the U.S. and are essential partners in creating a more just and sustainable future for all.”  

To learn more about the development of this resource and how to be involved, contact