In these days of environmental crisis there is a need to increase people’s sensitivity to and involvement in, finding solutions for environment and development problems. Education can give people the environmental and ethical awareness, attitudes and values, skills and behavior needed for sustainable development. Even though adequate concepts on environmental concerns have been incorporated in the textbook of all subjects right from first standard, teachers are unable to infuse effectively in their teaching learning process. As a result, the children are deprived of environmental ethics and consequently when they become adult citizens they resort to destructive activities on the environment. After realizing the need for promoting knowledge along with attitudes, values and skills among teachers and students on environmental concerns ecoschools have been established. The present study which was carried out by involving 120 members of the community from 10 of the 50 elementary ecoschools developed in Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu from July 2008 to March 2009 focuses on the need for participation of members of the community in improving the performance of the ecoschools for sustainable environment. The knowledge, attitudes, practices, and performances of the members of the community were evaluated by administering tools namely “questionnaire”, “attitude scale”, “application inventory” and “rating scale”, respectively. The “questionnaire” and “attitude scale”consisted of 20 questions and statements, respectively under four dimensions namely “biology”, “water resources”,“pollution” and “hygiene and sanitation”. The “application inventory” and “rating scale” comprised of four statements each. The grand mean knowledge score of the community recorded in the pre-test was 78.86%. The grand mean knowledge score registered in the post-test was 92.39%–an increase of 13.53 percentage points over the pre-test score. While the grand mean attitude score registered in the pre-test was 94.07%, the grand mean attitude score in the post-test was 4.14 percentage points higher than the pre-test score. The grand mean rating score recorded was only 36.87%. A wide variation among the various aspects of practices and performance was recorded. Even though the members of the community is known to possess higher level of knowledge about and attitude towards the environment the existing wide gap between the practices and performance needs to be narrowed down to enable them involve with more commitment in improving the physical environment of the schools and villages.

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Community participation in ecoschools for sustainable environment from cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu, India

K. Sampath   District Institute of Education and Training

In these days of environmental crisis there is a need to increase people’s sensitivity to and involvement in, finding solutions for environment and development problems. Education can give people the environmental and ethical awareness, attitudes and values, skills and behavior needed for sustainable development. Even though adequate concepts on environmental concerns have been incorporated in the textbook of all subjects right from first standard, teachers are unable to infuse effectively in their teaching learning process. As a result, the children are deprived of environmental ethics and consequently when they become adult citizens they resort to destructive activities on the environment. After realizing the need for promoting knowledge along with attitudes, values and skills among teachers and students on environmental concerns ecoschools have been established. The present study which was carried out by involving 120 members of the community from 10 of the 50 elementary ecoschools developed in Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu from July 2008 to March 2009 focuses on the need for participation of members of the community in improving the performance of the ecoschools for sustainable environment. The knowledge, attitudes, practices, and performances of the members of the community were evaluated by administering tools namely “questionnaire”, “attitude scale”, “application inventory” and “rating scale”, respectively. The “questionnaire” and “attitude scale”consisted of 20 questions and statements, respectively under four dimensions namely “biology”, “water resources”,“pollution” and “hygiene and sanitation”. The “application inventory” and “rating scale” comprised of four statements each. The grand mean knowledge score of the community recorded in the pre-test was 78.86%. The grand mean knowledge score registered in the post-test was 92.39%–an increase of 13.53 percentage points over the pre-test score. While the grand mean attitude score registered in the pre-test was 94.07%, the grand mean attitude score in the post-test was 4.14 percentage points higher than the pre-test score. The grand mean rating score recorded was only 36.87%. A wide variation among the various aspects of practices and performance was recorded. Even though the members of the community is known to possess higher level of knowledge about and attitude towards the environment the existing wide gap between the practices and performance needs to be narrowed down to enable them involve with more commitment in improving the physical environment of the schools and villages.

A copy of the full paper has not yet been submitted.

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