South Africa: Italy Feels the Heat and Changes School Curricula


Pupil power has had an effect in Italy, where the education minister has announced that all state schools in the country will dedicate one hour per week to climate change issues starting from the 2020 academic year.

Activism is working. The rebellion of young people in particular is raising awareness and making climate change a growing political issue in many parts of the world.

In England, for example, a weekend report suggested that many of the voters in the coming general election feel climate change must be higher up the political parties' agenda. This would have been compounded by recent floods in parts of northern England where one month's rain fell in one night, causing devastation in towns and villages where spending cuts have weakened emergency services' readiness for climate disasters.

However, Italy offers one of the most concrete examples of where a mass movement, led by school pupils linked to the Fridays for Future movement, is bringing about small but significant changes.

Last week, newspapers reported that the Education Minister, Lorenzo Fioramonti (not long ago an academic at the University of Pretoria), had announced that all state schools in Italy would dedicate one hour per week to climate change...

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