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children exploring a tidal pool on the coast

The N.C. Office of Environmental Education encourages, supports and promotes environmental education programs, facilities and resources and equips educators with the skills and knowledge to improve environmental literacy, stewardship of natural resources and environmental justice in North Carolina.

What We Do

The NC Office of Environmental Education and Public Affairs offers the NC Environmental Education Certification program and serves as the state's environmental education information clearinghouse. The office provides resources, support and consultation for North Carolina's PreK-12 teachers, nonformal educators, homeschool educators and the public.  You can use the environmental education website to find professional development opportunities for educators as well as outdoor experiences, field trips, curriculum, lesson plans and classroom visits. These opportunities and resources are offered by agencies, organizations, colleges, and universities throughout North Carolina. The office also identifies and promotes programs provided by the state's environmental education centers, including nature and science centers, arboretums, public gardens, museums, coastal reserves, zoos, aquariums and local, state, and national parks and forests. The Office is a state agency within the NC Department of Environmental Quality. 

Why Environmental Education?

In the classroom and beyond, the desired outcome of environmental education is environmental literacy. People who are environmentally literate understand how natural systems function and how humans and the environment are intertwined. To that end, environmental education strives to provide learners with sound scientific information and the vital skills of problem solving, critical thinking and decision-making. At one time or another, individuals will be compelled to address and solve complex environmental problems affecting the economy, public health or shared natural resources. Environmental education provides the necessary tools.