From Little Things, Big Things Grow
In 2015 we celebrated 35 years of the Australian Association for Environmental Education. In the years circa 1979-1980, a passionate group of educators driven to put ‘education about the environment’ on the national agenda formed our national Association. AAEE (soon fondly referred to as A2E2) was an opportunity for like-minded people to network and no longer feel isolated in their respective fields. It gave them a voice and shared goals were soon driven with force and determination because of the friendships and community that drove it.
Queensland environmental educators were at the forefront of the new association with Peter Fensham (a Queenslander in Victoria at the time!) as its first President (1979 – 1981). In 1982, the same year that AAEE adopted the Nautilus logo, Brisbane hosted the second AAEE conference and Bob Stevenson from the Queensland Department of Education launched the Australian Journal of Environmental Education (AJEE).
In 1985 the Queensland Chapter of AAEE was formed and this helped to strengthen the position of EE across the state. From 1991 – 1992, Queensland held the National Executive Committee (in the early days national executive committees rotated as a whole around the country). The seemingly halcyon days for EE in Queensland during the 1990s saw a number of significant initiatives for both AAEE and the Queensland Chapter.
You can read more about the history of AAEE in the 35 year celebratory issue of ozEEnews, our longstanding newsletter.