The Peterborough area's
reputation for carrying out leading-edge work in promoting environmental
sustainability for the benefit of future generations will be examined by
more than 150 education specialists from the UK and overseas next January.
The city has been selected to
host the 33rd annual conference of the National Association of Field
Studies Officers (NAFSO) who spearhead environmental education and field
studies work for schools and colleges throughout the UK.
NAFSO chairman Rosie Edwards,
who is also head of the Cambridgeshire Environmental Education Service,
said: "As one of the UK's four Environment Cities, Peterborough has
an excellent reputation for the enormous amount of work being done on
"This NAFSO conference is
designed to help field studies officers make a positive response to the
growing national concern over the twin issues of raising educational
achievement and promoting a sustainable future.
"Field studies officers
have a unique role in being able to make a valuable contribution towards
achieving both of these goals through the education they provide for the
The three-day conference,
being held at the Swallow Hotel in Peterborough on Wednesday, Thursday and
Friday 3, 4 and 5 January, includes a mixture of presentations, seminars,
workshops and a wide selection of environmental activities.
The final day will feature
presentations from high-ranking government officials. Jacqui Smith MP,
Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education, will discuss the
government's agenda for sustainable development education; and Diane
Simmonds, senior education adviser in the Standards and Effectiveness Unit
at the Department for Education and Employment, will talk about raising
achievement through field studies.
Among the environmental
activities available to delegates will be a tour of Peterborough's £11
million Millennium Green Wheel cycle route; visits to Rutland Water,
Barnwell country park, Grafham Water, Stibbington Eco-Centre, Ferry
Meadows, a proposed 700-hectare wetland site at Needingworth, sites of
geological importance and environmental projects at local primary schools.
In keeping with the
conference's environmental theme, delegates are being encouraged to travel
to Peterborough by train and cycle from the station to the hotel.
The conference is being
supported by a wide range of national and local organisations, including
the Environment Agency, National Grid, Cambridgeshire County Council,
Peterborough City Council, Peterborough Environment City Trust, the
Department for Education and Employment, Council for Environmental
Education, Perkins Engines, Anglian Water, Posford Duvivier and many
wildlife and environmental organisations.