Letters to the Editor

IslandWood event aids school project | Letters | March 27

We’re so richly blessed here with easy access to parks and natural landscapes that we sometimes take outdoor experiences for granted. And it can be easy to overlook the importance of these experiences for growing children.

Numerous national and regional professional studies indicate that outdoor education makes a difference in kids’ lives.

IslandWood believes that formative outdoor education experiences are essential for all children regardless of financial need.

To that end, we host 70 schools annually and provide educational summer camp experiences when school is not in session.

A challenging economy means that public schools throughout the state are currently strapped for funds. Bainbridge Island School District is no exception, and our schools were forced to cut funding for outdoor education from the budgets at Blakely, Ordway and Wilkes schools.

Parents from these schools are working to independently raise money so the outdoor education tradition continues for their children this year.

On April 11, IslandWood will host “Enviropalooza” to honor National Environmental Education Week and Earth Day.

We’ll dedicate all proceeds from this popular event to support the parent-teacher organizations at the elementary schools in providing outdoor education for Bainbridge students – regardless of whether they visit IslandWood, Olympic Park Institute or Millersylvania State Park.

You can find out more about “Enviropalooza” activities at www.islandwood.org.

Ben Klasky

executive director, IslandWood

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