Environmental Education of New Mexico Announces a Multi-Year Shared Vision and Strategy to Provide Equitable Access to the Outdoors for all New Mexico Kids
Organization has successfully realized
outdoor education efforts in New Mexico
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — January 29, 2021 (Santa Fe, NM): Environmental Education of New Mexico has released its “Every Kid, Every Day, Every Way” strategy for outdoor and environmental learning, with clear recommendations that will help achieve equitable access to the outdoors for all New Mexico kids. The plan has been developed leveraging three-years of community conversations, with input from more than 200 individuals from 90 different organizations, agencies and schools. EENM’s 17 Fellows have also been closely involved in developing the plan.

EENM is poised to provide leadership for outdoor education because of its robust collaboration with many organizations who have been providing outdoor and environmental education across the state to 170,000 children annually, with the goal to reach all New Mexico kids.

“We have been boots on the ground in this field realizing the success of outdoor learning and environmental education for many years,” said Eileen Everett, EENM executive director. “We support a diverse range of partners across the state like the Sandia Mountain Natural History Center, which leads ecological science programs on-site for all 5th graders in Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) and Rio Rancho Public Schools, the Valencia Soil & Water Conservation District, New Mexico Highlands University and many more,” she said.

EENM is a strong supporter of the intersection of access to the outdoors and environmental learning, including the connections to the New Mexico Office of Outdoor Recreation and of the Outdoor Equity Fund, both of which are working to expand the outdoor recreation economy to every corner of New Mexico and bring jobs, prosperity and wellness to all state residents.

The announcement of EENM’s comprehensive outdoor education road map comes at the same time that Wild Friends, a student civics group organized by UNM, is introducing Senate Memorial 1, requesting the establishment of a task force to promote the use of outdoor classrooms in NM. EENM has worked with Wild Friends drafting the bill, which is being introduced by Siah Correa Hemphill (D-Silver City).

The long-term goals of the EENM plan are that every New Mexico child will have access to the outdoors and environmental learning, that New Mexico’s children are supported in daily experiences outdoors, in both in-school and out-of-school experiences, and to identify and promote the variety of approaches that help connect kids with the outdoors. These connections include, but are not limited to, conservation, experiential, environmental, land-based, nature-based outdoor, and place-based education.

A few of the key recommendations of the plan include:
  • Establish an Office of Outdoor and Environmental Education at the state level to support teachers and school staff. Embed outdoor ambassadors in every school district and ultimately at every school.
  • Develop a network of outdoor gear “plus” libraries to support kids, families, and community members. Restructure requirements and resources for pre-service and in-service teachers to include an “introduction to Outdoor Learning.”
  • Finance and Support teachers for ongoing Professional Development annually.

The EENM Fellows program supports 17 paid Fellows that have made significant contributions to the multi-year plan. EENM understands that there are many approaches to outdoor and environmental learning and education, including conservation, experiential, environmental, nature-based, and place-based education.

In October of 2020, (EENM) created The New Mexico Outdoor Learning Guidance for 2020-2021 School Reentry, adopted by the New Mexico Public Education Department, along with a new website “Outdoor Learning in New Mexico during Covid-19: Resources and Support for the 2020-2021 School Year,”  designed to support parents, families, teachers, and administrators across New Mexico in the implementation of outdoor learning at home, in communities, and at school during and after Covid-19.
Jennifer Villela
About EENM 
Environmental Education of New Mexico believes that every New Mexican should have access to high-quality, engaging, and meaningful environmental education opportunities. This will lead to a thriving future for all, where environmental and social responsibility drive individual and institutional choices. EENM strives to ensure every New Mexican child has equitable access to environmental and outdoor learning through the implementation of an advocacy focused movement and well as collaboration and leadership, serving students from PreK through 12th grade by investing in leaders and collaborators that represent a variety of educational experiences and perspectives.
Every Kid, Every Day, Every Way Contributing Schools,
Agencies, Businesses, and Organizations
Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority
Albuquerque BioPark
Albuquerque Collegiate Charter School
Albuquerque Open Space
Albuquerque Parks and Recreation
Albuquerque Public Schools
Alice King Community School
Asombro Institute for Science Education
Aspen Community Magnet School
Audubon New Mexico
Bel-Air Elementary
BEMPBernalillo County Open Space
Bosque School
Building Beloved Communities
Center for Social Sustainable Systems
Central New Mexico Community College
City of Albuquerque
Ciudad Soil & Water Conservation District
Conservation Legacy
Cottonwood Gulch Expeditions
Crownpoint High School
DEAP School
Denver Zoo at Rio Mora National Wildlife Refuge
Earth Force
Earth Guardians
ABQElevation Children's Center
Farmington Municipal Schools
Field Institute of Taos
Global Warming Express
Haak'u Community Academy
Jimmy Carter Middle School
La Plazita Institute
LANL Foundation
Manzano Day School
McCune Charitable Foundation
Mission: Graduate
Mountain Kids!
National Museum of Nuclear Science and History
National Park Service
National Parks Conservation Association
Native American Community Academy
Navajo Elementary
New Mexico Department of Game and Fish

New Mexico Highlands University
New Mexico Museum of Natural History
and Science
New Mexico Out of School Time Network
New Mexico PBS
New Mexico Public Education Department
New Mexico Wilderness Alliance
New Mexico Wildlife Federation
New Mexico Youth Convservation Corps
On a Wing and a Prayer
Pajarito Environmental Education Center
Partnership for Responsible Business
Public Lands Interpretive Association
Pueblo of Acoma
Pueblo of Santa Ana Department of
Natural Resources
Querencia Institute
Quivira Coalition
Reunity Resources
Rio Grande Chapter of the Sierra Club
Rio Grande High School
Rio Rancho Public Schools
River Source
Rocky Mountain Youth Corps
San Ildefonso Pueblo Health and
Human Services Division
Sandia Mountain Natural History Center
Sandia National Laboratories
Santa Fe Botanical Garden
Santa Fe Public Schools
Santa Fe Watershed Association
Silver Stallion Bicycle and Coffee Works, Inc.
Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP)
Taft Middle School
Talking Talons Youth Leadership
Taos Land Trust
The Nature Conservancy
The Wilderness Society
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
U.S. Forest Service
United World College
UNM Environmental Law Society
Valencia Soil & Water Conservation District
Valle de Oro NWR
Velasquez Campaign Committee
Wild Friends Program/UNM