Map of the Week – Schools, Youth and the Ocean
On 24 January 2022, we celebrated International Day of Education under the theme “Changing Course, Transforming Education”. On this occasion, Director-General of UNESCO Ms Audrey Azoulay stated that “In these exceptional times, business as usual is no longer an option. If we are to transform the future, if we are to change course, we must rethink education. This means forging a new social contract for education, as called for by the UNESCO report on the Futures of Education, released last November. We need to repair past injustices and orient the digital transformation around inclusion and equity. And we need education to fully contribute to sustainable development – for instance, by integrating environmental education in all curricula and by training teachers in this field”.  On the same day, the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC) organized a webinar titled “A new blue curriculum: A toolkit for policy-makers – Mainstreaming Ocean Literacy in Education Policy Formulation” which addressed the inclusion of Ocean Literacy in the school curricula. Ocean Literacy is understanding the ocean’s influence on you, and your influence on the ocean. 
Ocean Literacy is at the core of the work carried out by members of the Network of European Blue Schools and Young Ocean Advocates members of the Youth4Ocean Forum presented in the Map of the Week. Together with the EU4Ocean Platform, the Network of European Blue Schools and the Youth4Ocean Forum are part of the EU4Ocean Coalition. The Network of European Blue Schools aims to inspire teachers, school directors or staff of education services, to challenge their students, from kindergarten, primary, secondary, technical or vocational schools, to ‘Find the Blue’ and develop a project that links them to the ocean or the sea. The Young Ocean Advocates are young project holders, aged 16 to 30-years-old. Their projects have been recognised and accredited by the European Commission, as making a meaningful and lasting change for the Ocean. Click on the pieces of the puzzle in the map to learn about the schools, the Young Ocean Advocates and their projects. Wish to join them? Consult the Network of European Blue Schools and the Youth4Ocean Forum webpages to find out how to apply!
Did you know there is a Teachers Corner in the European Atlas of the Seas where you can find map based educational resources on the ocean, including exercises in English, French and Portuguese, a quiz and a Treasure Hunt? The exercises available in Portuguese were developed by teachers involved in the Escola Azul programme in Portugal. A very special thank you to them and happy Education Day to all teachers and students! Wish to learn about the Blue Schools in Portugal, South Africa and Brazil? Listen to the All-Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance podcast on Blue Schools and Ocean Literacy!
Don’t wait, get involved too and dive in the European Atlas of the Seas and the Teachers Corner to explore the ocean, seas and coasts!
 Message from Ms Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, on the occasion of the International Day of Education: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000380334