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As Congress and presidential candidates trade accusations over immigration reform, advocates and experts urge caution in spreading misinformation; Alabama takes new action IVF policy following controversial court decision; and central states urge caution with wildfires brewing.

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Congress reaches a deal to avoid a partial government shutdown again. Arizona Republicans want to ensure Trump remains on their state ballot and Senate Democrats reintroduce the John Lewis Voting Rights Act.

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Hard times could be ahead for rural school districts that spent federal pandemic money on teacher salaries, a former Oregon lumber community drafts a climate-action plan and West Virginians may soon buy raw milk from squeaky-clean cows.

For Students, A Trip to the Forest is a Game Changer

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Thursday, September 22, 2022   

As California's children settle into the new school year, about 1,500 students will soon take the field trip of a lifetime to see the giant redwoods.

The nonprofit Save the Redwoods League works with schools from Santa Cruz up to Humboldt.

Emily Wiberg, a fourth grade math teacher at Achieve Academy in Oakland, said the day trip to Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park is a game-changer for children from under-resourced communities.

"For the majority of them, it's their first time being out in nature," Wiberg pointed out. "It's really exciting to see them getting their hands dirty and exploring."

Wiberg's class also takes part in the watershed program at Crab Cove, in partnership with the East Bay Regional Park District. There, children put on waders and examine the marine ecosystem. Trips for junior high and high school students focus more on scientific data collection.

Deborah Zierten, education manager for the Save the Redwoods League, said the program promotes diversity, equity and inclusion by creating opportunities in all communities.

"We try and provide free bus transportation, or if they're able to provide buses, we always provide free instruction when we get to the forest," Zierten explained. "We don't want to charge because we don't want that to be a barrier."

The program hopes to inspire students to consider careers in forestry and natural-resource management. And it teaches students about threats to the watershed and old-growth forests such as development, wildfires, and drought linked to climate change.

Disclosure: The Save the Redwoods League contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Endangered Species & Wildlife, Environment, and Public Lands/Wilderness. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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