With over 85% of our population in urban areas, there are shrinking opportunities for first-hand experience on working farms and ranches. As a consequence, public education systems are now noticeably lacking in those learning opportunities that engage students in a way that leads to a better understanding of private lands stewardship, wildlife conservation and ranching.

The Foundation’s education program is based on the idea that an educated public understands the real value of wildlife conservation, along with the other public benefits of ranching and private land stewardship.

Our approach is to deliberately engage in partnerships that allow us to expand education opportunities in South Texas. Our partners provide access to well-developed curricula and exposure to students and teachers, while we provide hands-on lessons in wildlife conservation, ranching, and land stewardship. This combination is already producing success within the public schools of South Texas.

    • We deliver proven natural resource curriculum within classrooms of South Texas. In partnership with the Texas Wildlife Association Foundation, our 2014-2015 education program has reached 18,055 students across 66 campuses in 7 South Texas counties. Our educators are delivering education modules that are customized to meet the required teaching goals of the classroom while also engaging kids in real lessons that feature the wildlife and natural resources of South Texas. When these kids have access to the natural world, they are better able to understand science, math and literature, thereby performing better in school and ultimately achieving more in their community.
    • We bring classrooms to the Foundation’s ranchlands for first-hand learning experiences. We know that real understanding of the natural world is gained by hands-on experiences, those that are unplugged from today’s virtual classroom. In partnership with IDEA Public Schools, we brought over 2,300 students and teachers out for day-long learning experiences on an East Foundation ranch.

As our education program develops, these early successes will open a wide range of future opportunity for further expanding education opportunities in South Texas. Our challenge is to make sure our education program translates into measurable outcomes.

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