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Senator Hauschild Champions Outdoor School for All Grant Program

Legislation would support outdoor learning opportunities for students in 4th through 8th grade throughout Minnesota

[SAINT PAUL, MN] — More of Minnesota’s students would have the opportunity to learn outdoor skills under a proposal from Senator Grant Hauschild (DFL-Hermantown) thanks to the establishment of an Out­door School for All grant pro­gram, which was heard in the Senate Environment, Climate, and Legacy Committee on Tues­day, April 9th.

“Far too many of our kids spend their days indoors in front of screens. Without the access, opportunity, and en­couragement to explore the outdoors, many of our kids are suffering from increased men­tal health concerns, physical wellbeing issues, and other ad­verse effects,” said Sen. Haus­child. “This program will give more of our young people that opportunity, especially those students who don’t typically have that chance.”

Currently, only 29% of stu­dents have access to these types of outdoor experiences, which take place primarily in one of the five outdoor schools that exist in Minnesota. One of the outdoor schools, Wolf Ridge, is located in Finland in Northeastern, Minnesota. The Outdoor school for All Grant Program would be open to schools to help support over­night outdoor education pro­gram experiences for students in grades 4 through 8, with a focus on helping underserved students, including students with disabilities.

The bill was laid over for pos­sible inclusion in a future om­nibus bill.

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