No Child Left Inside

No Child Left Inside (NCLI) a national grassroots initiative to persuade the U.S. Congress to amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to include environmental education within national K-12 education requirements and opportunities. Providing environmental education to all students is vital to the future of country’s economic, environmental, and social health.  There are many benefits to including environmental education in a formal K-12 education setting.

The No Child Left Inside Act of 2011 was introduced on July 14, 2011 by Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Congressman John Sarbanes (D-MD). The Act is co-sponsored by Minnesota Representatives Ellison (5th district) and McCollum (4th district). Read The No Child Left Inside Act of 2011: Senate Bill (pdf) and  House Bill (pdf).

The Act includes:
  • Funding to train teachers to deliver high quality Environmental Education and utilize the local environment as an extension of the classroom.
  • Incentives for states to develop State Environmental Literacy Plans to insure that every student is prepared to understand the environmental challenges of the future.
  • Encouragement for teachers, administrators, and school systems to make time and resources available for environmental education for all students.
  • Environmental Education will be integrated across core subject areas.

VIDEO: No Child Left Inside

Environmental Literacy Plans

The NCLI legislation would provide new funding for environmental education, particularly to develop rigorous standards, train teachers and to develop state environmental literacy plans. It also proposes giving states that develop such environmental literacy plans access to additional funds. For this reason, many states are working on environmental literacy plans in anticipation of the legislation passing. The MAEE is leading the effort to develop an environmental literacy plan in Minnesota.

Read more about what an Environmental Literacy Plan is on the Minnesota's Environmental Literacy Plan page.

Join the No Child Left Inside Coalition

The MAEE is a member of the No Child Left Inside Coalition and represents MAEE members in the national NCLI movement. MAEE encourages all organizations to show their support for environmental education by becoming a member of the NCLI Coalition.

Take Action

Write your U.S. House representative and Minnesota’s two Senators (Klobuchar and Franken) and voice your opinion in support of NCLI! MAEE members connecting with Representatives Ellison, McCollum have resulted in their co-sponsorship of the NCLI bill! Learn how on our How to Contact your Representatives page.

Recent NCLI news

On October 20th, the Senate Committee  on  Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) completed its mark up of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). During the mark up hearing, the committee accepted an amendment put forth by Senator Casey (PA) that proposed a new grant program entitled “Well-Rounded Education” which includes environmental education as a subject eligible for funding under Title IV of ESEA. This marks an historic shift in federal education policy and is a significant and critical step towards our collective goal of ensuring access to high quality environmental and outdoor education programs for all students.
This is only one more step, but it is a big step in the right direction. Senator Harkin, Chairman of the HELP Committee, has indicated his interest in bringing the ESEA legislation to the Senate floor for a vote in the coming weeks. We will be closely monitoring this process and pursuing all opportunities to work with our sponsor, Senator Jack Reed (RI) to build on our success and pursue additional opportunities to advance environmental literacy through ESEA. Stay tuned for further updates, and visit for upcoming details on what the Senate bill would mean for states.
Thanks to all of you for your continued advocacy for NCLI. It is because of your efforts that we have achieved this remarkable milestone.

© Minnesota Association for Environmental Education
3815 American Blvd E Bloomington, MN 55425
612-354-MAEE (6233) |
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software