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The Exploration Place offering free school programming to northern B.C.

The Exploration Place has been offering school programming to classrooms across northern B.C.
since 2001. Thanks to an $80,000 grant from the Drax Foundation, school visits and programs
will be offered free of charge for northern B.C. elementary, secondary, and post-secondary
schools in the 2023-2024 school year.

Funds from the Drax Foundation’s first round of granting, with the goal of supporting education
and skills development in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), as well as
improving green spaces, enhancing biodiversity, and supporting Indigenous communities, will
be used over the next two years to update, redesign, and expand the Museum’s school
programs in collaboration with staff experts, teachers, and post-secondary educators. In this
first year, it will also support the removal of financial barriers that can be challenging for
teachers.

The result will be updated, curriculum-linked programs, increased outreach to classrooms and
visiting classes, and an expansion of travelling programs to classrooms in the North over the
next three years.

The Exploration Place is one of three organizations chosen in Canada to be beneficiaries of a
total of $150,000 in grant funding from the Drax Foundation.

“These organizations have spearheaded important initiatives in their respective fields that have
lasting impacts in their local communities,” said Sandy Sung, Community Manager for Drax.
“Additionally, they each represent the diversity of our local communities which aligns with our
values of being a people, climate, and nature positive company.”

The Exploration Place is the largest cultural institution in northern B.C., a huge area roughly the
size of France. The museum has taken on the responsibility of sharing their work throughout
the region whenever possible, particularly to small, rural, remote, and Indigenous communities
in the province that would not ordinarily have access to the resources and experiences that we
have to offer here in Prince George. By providing free access, the Museum is better enabling
the northern half of British Columbian students and teachers to benefit from its staff’s expertise
and new learning experiences.

“We have been looking for ways to increase not only the quality, but also the accessibility of
our school programming for a long time,” said Robyn Curtis, The Exploration Place’s Vice
President of Development and Partnerships. “With this funding, we can hugely expand our
roster of informal learning opportunities for Northern BC students, and give access to those
who would otherwise not be able to participate. Especially in our current climate, it’s so
important to educate kids about STEM learning and inspire a new generation of critical
thinkers.”

Development of new programs is underway this summer and fall, with free school programs
and field trips being offered at the Museum beginning in September 2023. As capacity allows,
free travelling school programs will begin in 2024.

Booking opens on September 18. Eligible school districts will receive an access code for online
booking, or teachers can contact The Exploration Place’s education team.

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