More than 470 teachers from primary and secondary schools participated in the fourteenth Educational Training Institute, which was a landmark development for Galápagos education. As a result of the collaboration between Galápagos Conservancy, the Galápagos District Education Directorate, and the Scalecia Foundation, the institute, primarily centered on “Ecotourism”, aims primarily to promote sustainable tourism practices that cater to the needs of local communities while protecting natural resources.
The educators went through a rigorous 40-hour training program designed to integrate ecotourism into the Galápagos Contextualized Curriculum. The program was enhanced by hands-on field trips organized by the ECOS Foundation, which collaborated with civil society and other organizations to develop Experiential Learning Scenarios (EVA).
The ultimate goal of this educational strategy is to raise awareness among young people about the importance of sustainable tourism. During the event the facilitators emphasized the significance of responsible resource use and the critical role of sustainable tourism as a significant economic activity for the region.
Washington Tapia, our general director, emphasized the institute’s significant contribution to Galápagos education. “It equips our educators with the essential tools needed to nurture a generation that is aware and dedicated to conserving the unique nature of Galápagos, upon which those of us privileged to live here depend on,” he said.
Educational Institutes play an important role in enriching the curriculum and advocating for sustainability. These institutes, which began in 2016, have become a biannual fixture as part of the Education for Sustainability Program, a collaborative effort by Galápagos Conservancy, the Galápagos District Education Directorate, and the Scalecia Foundation under an inter-institutional cooperation framework.
Jenny Macías, the Education for Sustainability Program’s director, stated that the initiative goes beyond teacher training. Its ultimate goal is to improve educational quality and raise environmental awareness among the province’s 7,000-plus students. “By empowering teachers with innovative, sustainability-based educational approaches, we are shaping future Galápagos generations into leaders who will actively contribute to the conservation of the archipelago as a socio-ecosystem,” Jenny highlighted.