With the wonderful Peak District on our doorstep the government wants to make sure every child will visit a national park during their education.
New figures have been announced that nationally only 10 per cent of children currently have access to outdoor learning.
The new Plan for National Parks kickstarts a programme of activity to safeguard the future of these iconic landscapes, including engaging young people throughout their education.
Jim Bailey, chairman of National Parks England said: “Our National Parks are the jewels in the crown of our beautiful countryside and something to be very proud of. They are living, working landscapes that need careful stewardship, for the benefit and enjoyment by all.
“I look forward to working with the government on delivering this exciting Plan for England’s National Parks.”
As part of the new plan, the government will promote a new package of imaginative and relevant teaching materials for schools based on National Parks, to connect National Parks with the curriculum and show children what they can learn and experience when they visit.
Starting in primary school, more than 80,000 young people will be brought to visit National Parks and National Parks will be put on the curriculum.
At secondary school, the plan is to double the number of youth volunteers in National Parks as part of the National Citizen Service.
In their first steps to employment, developing a new apprenticeship standard and doubling apprenticeships in National Parks will be in place by 2020.
This will be promoted by the Department for Education and accessible through the National Parks UK website.
The government protected National Parks’ budgets in the last spending review, committing over £350 million for English National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and forests.
The new plan will further secure the future of these iconic protected landscapes, ensuring effective environmental management and growing a strong rural economy.