History of EEPSA

EEPSA is one of the 33 Provincial Specialist Associations within the BCTF that supports teachers to network, collaborate, influence and implement curriculum, and share resources.  PSAs provide workshops, host conferences, review resources, write curriculum, facilitate collaboration, and empower teachers to lead professional development for their colleagues.

EEPSA began in 1981, and has kept much the same purpose for the last 36 years, perhaps with a slight shift in language.  In the 1980s, our focus was primarily on outdoor education.

Today’s EE is still about place-based learning that helps teachers connect with community partners to introduce their students to their local physical, social and cultural places, and get involved in a path of action forward to live wisely in those places.  We strive to empower teachers to take their students outside of the traditional walls of the classroom to experience their learning in the context of their living ecologies.   This can be a physical journey to a local wetland, or it can be an intellectual journey into the life of another in a climate justice discussion.

What is unchanged is the role of individual EEPSA members actively leading the future of education in BC, and the power of those individuals when they are united in a common purpose.

A new provincial specialists’ association is born!  The Environmental and Outdoor Educators’ Conference of B.C. held in Vancouver March 13th and 14th attracted a host of participants concerned with developing directions and material for integrated studies in the out-of-doors.  This gathering of so many enthusiastic people affirmed the need to form a central organization which would facilitate sharing and discussion.   It was, in fact, the initial event in the life of the Environmental and Outdoor Education Association of B.C.  The 235 attending have become its first members.  Credit goes to a steering committee of the Outdoor Educators of B.C. (now merged with us) for arranging the conference, drafting our constitution and organizing our first A.G.M., held Friday at the conference.   At a meeting April 24th and 25th, the newly-elected executive set in motion plans for a conference next spring, a journal, and liaison with similar P.S.A.s in other provinces.

We’re off at a good clip.  If we are to become a vigorous and worthwhile association we need your active involvement.   The items in this newsletter suggest many ways you can contribute.  Let’s hear from you.

Ruth Foster

Environmental and Outdoor Education Association of BC Newsletter, Volume 1

1981

Past Presidents of EEPSA

  • Burt Deeter
  • Brian Herrin
  • Ernie Cordonier
  • Roger Hammill
  • Deborah Davies
  • Steven Lott
  • Bryn Williams
  • Patrick Robertson