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Saudi Gazette Prince Turki Bin Nasser Bin Abdulaziz with Prince Faisal Bin Abdullah Bin Muhammad overseeing environmental awareness literature to be taught in schools.
The Ministry of Education has officially boarded the wagon of making the Kingdom a beautiful green and eco-friendly nation. The Minister of Education, Prince Faisal Bin Abdullah Bin Muhammad, announced that environmental programs will be incorporated in the educational curriculum for all levels in school, as it is a religious and national obligation to protect the environment.
 The Minister of Education and the president of the Presidency of Meteorology and Environment, Prince Turki Bin Nasser Bin Abdulaziz, jointly launched a workshop at a school to begin the environmental program in Jeddah.
Prince Faisal told the press, “The concept of preserving the environment must be understood, spread, and more effectively activated in our communities. Schools play a vital role in spreading environmental awareness. One problem that must be dealt with now before it becomes too late and too difficult to solve is the large number of vehicles that pick and drop students, which is resulting in air pollution and harming the environment.”
 As part of the ministry’s responsibility in keeping the schools and the country greener, clear plans for public school transportation have been made and basic environmental studies will be taught to children in all schools.  
 The Saudi Environmental Society has cooperated with the ministry in designing and overseeing the environmental programs that will be taught in schools. The knowledge and experience of many experts in the field of environmental protection were combined to create an academic program for students with a balance between learning new concepts and implementing them. 
The environmental awareness workshops will start in Jeddah schools from this month and they will also target educators, so they can communicate the message accurately. Students and teachers alike will gradually internalize this catchy phrase, “The national flag is green; the country is green.”   
“Non-elective environmental awareness programs taught in schools is essential because the youth makes up 70 percent of the population in the Kingdom. Part of our work has been to prepare colorful, informative, interactive books for kindergarten schools about environmental awareness and sustainable development. We have also trained teachers how to teach and relay this new subject material to young children and help their schools become greener and more eco-friendly,” said Dr. Majda Abu Ras, Deputy Executive Director of the Saudi Environmental Society.
Abu Ras explained that successfully implementing the programs in all schools of the Kingdom will be completed in three phases. 
The first phase has already been initiated and will last for the coming two years during which environmental awareness subjects will be introduced to students in 300 schools at the kindergarten, primary, and intermediate levels. 
The next phase will involve spreading the environmental program to a greater number of schools and the final phase will be maintaining and ensuring continuity of the courses in every school in all regions of the Kingdom.
More such plans will be discussed at the Third Gulf Environment & Sustainable Development Forum which will be held on March 25 in Jeddah.


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