The Environmental Literacy and Outdoor Education Office of Anne Arundel County Public Schools provides interdisciplinary outdoor education for AACPS students and teachers. We integrate environmental literacy and outdoor learning into the AACPS school-based curricula at all grade levels for all students. We are part of the division of Curriculum and Instruction of Anne Arundel County Public Schools. For 50 years we have provided interdisciplinary environmental and outdoor education. Through outreach and our site-based programs, we provide face-to-face instruction to more than 25,000 students and 8,000 adults each school year. In addition, our school-based curricula reach students at all grade levels every year.
Our goals are to
1. Develop and implement a prekindergarten through high school environmental literacy curriculum and programming that align the MSDE Environmental Literacy standards with up-to-date standards in other core content areas.
2. Empower teachers to use the environment and outdoors as a context for learning.
3. Support the AACPS Strategic Plan of Community Involvement and the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement by serving as a community resource for educating and building stewardship among the citizens of Anne Arundel County.
Arlington Echo Outdoor Education Center is the headquarters of the Environmental Literacy and Outdoor Education Office. AACPS purchased Arlington Echo in 1971 from the Arlington Presbyterian Church of Baltimore. The 24-acre youth camp was named Arlington Echo because a call from the bluff would echo back from across the Severn River. AACPS had previously rented the property to be used as the “Arlington Echo Outdoor School.” In 1974, the site became known as the “Arlington Echo Outdoor Education Center.” Arlington Echo now serves as the outdoor education site for the fourth grade environmental literacy program and the “home base” for the many other programs overseen by EL/OE Office.