Funded Awards

The following open projects have been funded during the past four B-WET grant cycles (fiscal years 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015). Links to information on awards from prior fiscal years are available at the bottom of this page.

“B-WET funding” and “nonfederal match” amounts are the amounts applied to the project to date under the current grant. For some projects, additional federal funds and match are planned in future fiscal years.


Organization: Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570200
Project Title: Implementation of MWEEs through the Children in Nature Coalition
Overview: This grant supports the efforts of the Children in Nature Coalition (CIN) to integrate locally relevant, experiential learning related to the Chesapeake Bay watershed into core subject areas in the kindergarten through 12th-grade (K-12) educational scheme. A CIN coordinator will facilitate the implementation of professional development for in-service teachers and meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) for K-12 students, in alignment with the goals of NOAA’s Education Strategic Plan.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $94,500
Nonfederal Match: $31,500

Organization: Delaware Sea Grant (University of Delaware)
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570196
Project Title: Bay to Bay: A Multidisciplinary Watershed Investigation across the Delmarva Peninsula
Overview: This project will compare the Chesapeake and Delaware Bay watersheds through hands-on examination. Participating teachers will investigate the essential questions: 1) How do we use our watersheds to build our economy and way of life? and 2) What steps are we taking to preserve and improve the health of our watersheds? Through differentiated activities from respected informal education providers across the peninsula, participants will measure water quality, sample flora and fauna, and learn about Delmarva’s history, culture, and economy from experts along the transect. Multiday teacher professional development institutes will demonstrate an effective MWEE, while building content knowledge and teacher confidence. Teachers will also receive ongoing support through online collaboration tools and in-person meetings to assist with the planning and implementation of student MWEEs.
Duration: January 2014-December 2016
B-WET Funding: $75,000
Nonfederal Match: $18,691

District of Columbia

Organization: Alice Ferguson Foundation
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570202
Project Title: Action Projects and Teacher Professional Development for Meaningful Watershed Education Experiences in District of Columbia Public Schools and Charter Schools
Overview: For this project, the Alice Ferguson Foundation and partners work with District of Columbia Public Schools and Public Charter Schools to develop and pilot curriculum-based, hands-on action projects for fifth-grade students. Teachers also receive training in implementation of a full MWEE, including action projects, through hands-on summer Teacher Institutes and workshops, teacher-to-teacher mentoring, and support through online resources. This project leverages significant funding from the District Department of Environment to implement school outreach and overnight field study experiences for 6,000 fifth-grade students over two years.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $183,186
Nonfederal Match: $36,379


Organization: Hood College
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570296
Project Title: Project STEM: Schoolyard Thermal Evaluation and Mitigation
Overview: Project STEM involves high school teachers and students from both foundation of technology classes and environmental science or biology classes in two interrelated meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) for Frederick County Public Schools (Maryland). By leveraging the assets developed by the Hood College Center for Coast and Watershed Studies, the GLOBE program, and the NOAA Environmental Science Training Center, Project STEM employs schoolyards as sites to monitor and assess the effects of thermal pollution on local stream health. Students completing the program will understand the importance of urban environments as "heat islands" and the methods needed to mitigate their thermal effects on nearby waterways.
Duration: July 2016-June 2019
B-WET Funding: $71,762
Non-federal Match: $19,870

Organization: Anne Arundel County Public Schools
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570295
Project Title: Take Action: Teacher- and Student-Led MWEEs for a Changing Climate
Overview: Anne Arundel County Public Schools (AACPS) Environmental Literacy and Outdoor Education (EL&OE) Office will undertake the systemic development of meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEE)-based curriculum to every eighth-grade student districtwide. This will be achieved through curriculum development, professional development for eighth-grade science teachers, mentor and outreach to the classroom, support to teachers and students for action projects, and MWEE development. New curriculum development incorporating Next Generation Science Standards provides an opportunity for the AACPS Science office and EL&OE offices to work as partners in designing and implementing a 30-day hands-on unit based on the NGSS standard MS-ESS3-5, "Asking questions to clarify evidence of the factors that have caused the rise in global temperatures over the past century," and the Maryland Environmental Literacy Standards that focus on environmental issue investigation and action, the changing Earth climate, and human effects on natural resources. Through comprehensive professional development with the eighth-grade science teachers and staff support, eighth-grade students, led by their teachers, supported by the grant staff, will study climate issues, record and analyze data through GLOBE and NOAA sites, identify issues based on data, propose and implement environmentally friendly sustainable actions, and follow those solutions through to completion and reflection. Once their project is complete, the students will gather post data and evaluate their accomplishments. This project will touch more than 5,400 eighth-grade AACPS students annually.
Duration: July 2016-June 2017
B-WET Funding: $73,281
Non-federal Match: $7,044

Organization: National Aquarium Inc.
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570297
Project Title: Peer to Pier: Engaging Baltimore Middle School Students in Conservation at National Aquarium's Model Urban Waterfront
Overview: The primary goal of this project is to design and pilot meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) for planned eventual systemic implementation across an entire grade of Baltimore City Schools students (approximately 5,600) using the Aquarium's Model Urban Waterfront (MUW) as a platform. MUW incorporates Piers 3 and 4 of the Aquarium's waterfront campus, which will be undergoing a transformation into an environmental district with interpretive elements beginning in late 2016. It will provide publicly accessible, free learning opportunities and a highly functioning Inner Harbor ecosystem demonstrating a perched wetland complex, clean water technology such as biofilters, and Biohut habitat structures supporting aquatic life for scientific study. The Aquarium and City Schools will design and pilot MWEEs on that site with staggered implementation across the district. The Aquarium, City Schools, and representative conservation partners on the planning team will determine goals, objectives, detailed program design, and curriculum development in the first year. The resulting MWEEs will align with the Next Generation Science Standards that City Schools must implement district-wide and meet the goals of the Maryland Environmental Literacy graduation requirement. The project will help the state of Maryland meet its requirement under the Chesapeake Bay Agreement to provide MWEEs in elementary, middle, and high school.
Duration: July 2016-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $65,000
Non-federal Match: $32,145

Organization: National Audubon Society-Pickering Creek
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570242
Project Title: Audubon Conservation Team for Birds and the Chesapeake Bay ACT4 Birds
Overview: ACT4 Birds is a multifaceted systemic program that engages teachers and students in an investigative project, resulting in improved Chesapeake Bay habitat created by students in their schoolyard. The project is focused on teacher professional development directly connected to a meaningful watershed experience for their students. ACT4 Birds improves teachers’ ability and comfort level with outdoor investigative learning and increases their knowledge base about Chesapeake Bay watershed systems, the issues they face, and the work being done by conservation professionals to restore and protect the habitats in those systems that are critical to wildlife and water quality. Professional development for teachers will improve their proficiency in the IEEIA model while connecting them to scientists in their area that are working on improving Chesapeake Bay watersheds. Alongside teacher professional development, ACT4 Birds engages sixth-grade teachers, students, and administrators from Dorchester (Maryland) County Public Schools in investigative outdoor experiences including preparation, action, and reflection components to find solutions at the schoolyard level to address issues facing the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Flyway.
Duration: September 2014-August 2017
NOAA Funding: $186,790
Nonfederal Match: $24,666

Organization: University of Maryland, Center for Environmental Science-Horn Point Lab
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570244
Project Title: Integration of Environmental and Geographic Literacy: A Model for Maryland Schools
Overview: This project will enable two Maryland public school districts (Prince George’s County Public Schools and Anne Arundel County Public Schools) to integrate environmental literacy modules into science and social studies courses to meet the Maryland Environmental Literacy graduation requirement for high school students. The modules will meld ecological, geographic, social, and economic issues that address the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed and will focus on action projects to provide students with a meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE). A cadre of teams of science and social studies mentor teachers will be developed through professional development summer institutes, follow-up workshops, module implementation with student field investigations, and mentoring workshops. Ultimately, these mentor teachers will instruct peer teachers within their schools in a “train the trainer” model, ensuring continuity and sustainability beyond the scope of this program. The program will serve as a model for other school districts in the implementation of Maryland’s Environmental Literacy requirement for high school students, and for similar efforts in other states.
Duration: September 2014-August 2017
NOAA Funding: $291,410
Nonfederal Match: $160,914

Organization: University of Maryland, Center for Environmental Science-Appalachian Lab
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570247
Project Title: Watershed Research Investigations: A Student-Teacher-Scientist Partnership to Support Healthy Streams
Overview: The goal of the project is to immerse western Maryland high school students and their environmental science teachers in locally relevant robust science research experiences that increase their understanding of authentic science inquiry and the critical issue of stream nitrate pollution, while also empowering them to be responsible environmental stewards in their communities. The objectives are to (1) design and pilot a four-part schoolyard-based curricular unit and companion online map (using National Geographic’s FieldScope) that support conducting an authentic science investigation and sharing findings; (2) provide a comprehensive two-year professional development that includes extensive in-class support to prepare teachers to lead these authentic investigations; (3) partner students directly with Appalachian Lab scientists as they pursue these investigations and consider implications; (4) evaluate the impact of the professional development on teachers and the unit on students’ understanding of nitrate pollution and scientific inquiry; and (5) share materials, approach, and lessons learned at regional and national conferences.
Duration: September 2014-August 2017
NOAA Funding: $242,249
Nonfederal Match: $118,374

Organization: Annapolis Maritime Museum
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570195
Project Title: Annapolis Maritime Museum's Oyster Education Project
Overview: The AMM's sixth-grade yearlong investigation-based Oyster Education Program educates students about the culture and ecology of the Chesapeake Bay. Designed to fulfill the state environmental literacy standards, this program fulfills capacity that Anne Arundel County Public Schools’Office for Outdoor and Environmental Education cannot. Using the oyster as an integrating context to explore human interactions with the environment, the Museum’s goal is to foster a sense of personal ownership and sense of empowerment of local environmental issues. During a fall field experience, students participate in activities at the Annapolis Maritime Museum. Students initiate a yearlong oyster restoration project by measuring spat (juvenile oysters) and planting them in cages, collecting water-quality data and learning about oyster ecology. In the winter, staff travel to each class and teach students about oyster anatomy. Throughout the year, students connect with the project through an online blog. The project culminates in the spring, when students plant the oysters on a sanctuary reef. Students also participate in several land-based cultural experiences including interviewing a waterman about his direct connection to the ecology of the Bay. 
Duration: July 2015-June 2017
NOAA Funding: $120,890
Nonfederal Match: $218,802

Organization: Washington College
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570248
Project Title: Making It Real: Environmental Education That Brings Formal and Informal Programs in Alignment with MSDE Literacy and STEM Standards
Overview: Over this three-year program, more than 50 K-12 formal and informal educators from Kent and Queen Anne’s Counties will attend 80 hours of professional development modules tied directly to environmental literacy and STEM-related social issues specific to the Chester River and the Chesapeake Bay. Educators will travel from the Chester headwaters to the Bay on the Washington College research vessel analyzing samples and using sonar to image its bottom, build and deploy observation buoys, and involve their students in this venture. The buoy and weather data will be displayed in real-time on the MARACOOS website. Program content from this, NOAA’s Chesapeake Exploration, Chesapeake Bay Ecology Center, and Sassafras Environmental Education Center will be melded with Maryland State Department of Education environmental literacy and STEM standards to produce a coordinated programmatic message.
Duration: July 2014-June 2017
NOAA Funding: $300,000
Nonfederal Match: $0

Organization: Cecil County Board of Education in partnership with NorthBay
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570196
Project Title: Building Future Stewards of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed
Overview: This project will expand the Environmental Literacy Program to grade levels that are not currently being reached in Cecil County Public Schools through a meaningful watershed educational experience that focuses on improving the health of our local watershed and the Bay. Each middle school assesses and monitors a stream over the next several years, collecting data and creating an action research project to help improve stream water quality. High school students will conduct a study of microplastics (plastic plankton) in the Bay to determine if this problem exists and any affect it has on marine life. Teachers will be trained in the summer for five days the first year and three days in years two and three. Teachers will work with Northbay staff and the Department of Public Works to conduct stream assessments with seventh graders from each of the six middle schools. These two organizations will also work with all five high schools conducting studies on the Bay. The local library will help students with research and community outreach.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $140,907
Nonfederal Match: $0

Organization: Maryland Sea Grant
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570198
Project Title: Aquaculture in Action: A Model for STEM and E-Lit Education
Overview: The goal of this project is to create a network of school systems, administrators, teachers, students, and resources that are focused on modeling STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and E-Lit (environmental literacy) programs through project-based learning. Specifically, the expansion of the Maryland Sea Grant Aquaculture in Action (AinA) program model, in partnership with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Fisheries program and the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology Aquaculture Research Center, will enable the reintroduction of two key species (yellow perch and shad) into the classroom coupled with student-driven projects and meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs). Project objectives include:

  • Enhancement of the AinA curriculum to include STEM and E-Lit goals
  • Teacher professional development workshops
  • Development of resource hubs in four school systems
  • Local implementation of AinA curriculum and student-driven projects focused on yellow perch and shad
  • Analysis of curriculum, workshops, student-led projects, and teachers’ and administrators’ perspectives on project-based learning

Duration: July 2015-June 2017
B-WET Funding: $134,687
Nonfederal Match: $0

Organization: Howard County Conservancy
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570194
Project Title: Watershed Report Card: Students as Researchers and Advocates
Overview: In this project, ninth- and tenth-grade students take part in a replicable, yearlong assessment of their watershed and subwatersheds. A student-developed Watershed Report Card is their final product, serving as the evaluation tool students use to advocate with county leaders. The goals and objectives for this project include:

  • Provide the opportunity for all Howard County public high school ninth- and tenth-grade biology students to participate in quarterly watershed analysis activities, examine and critique local policies, advocate with decision makers and make informed environmental decisions.
  • Develop and offer professional development for Howard County Public School System high school biology teachers on the Watershed Report Card and related curriculum extensions.

Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $104,636
Nonfederal Match: $61,242

Organization: Sultana Education Foundation
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570197
Project Title: Choptank Choices: Investigating How Human Activities Have Altered the Ecosystem of the Choptank River over Time
Overview: The Sultana Education Foundation (Sultana) works with Caroline, Dorchester, and Talbot County Public Schools to implement a systemic, issue-based, hands-on, multidisciplinary project for the region’s fith-grade students and teachers focusing on how human activities in the Choptank watershed have affected the river’s ecosystem over time. During the school year, students will augment their classroom work with field investigations of the Choptank River aboard the 1768 schooner Sultana, have experts visit their classroom to discuss ways that land-­use choices affect the estuary, and participate in action projects to restore habitat and improve water quality. These activities will be supported by weeklong summer institutes and one-day professional development seminars for teachers from the participating counties.
Duration: August 2015-July 2018
B-WET Funding: $111,318
Nonfederal Match: $53,658

Organization: Board of Education of Montgomery County
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570215
Project Title: Our Neighborhood, Our Watershed (ONOW)
Overview: The goal of ONOW is to provide a meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE) that addresses the core content of the fourth-grade science curriculum and becomes an integral and permanent part of the instructional program. This systemic program will reach all fourth-grade students and their teachers. The ONOW project will encourage teachers to use schoolyards and community locales to conduct lessons on interactions between plants and animals, and on relationships between living things and the abiotic environment. The effect of human behaviors and decisions on the environment also will be studied in this program. ONOW will help in building the capacity of teachers to use their school site or nearby local area as an outdoor classroom for teaching and learning. The ONOW project responds to our need to provide high-quality and equitable MWEE that develops critical thinking, research skills, and lifelong commitments to environmental stewardship.
Duration: September 2013-August 2017
B-WET Funding: $191,052
Nonfederal Match: $178,697

Organization: Board of Education of Worcester County
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570213
Project Title: Infusing Chesapeake Bay Education into Maryland Environmental Literacy Standards
Overview: This project will serve teachers and students in grades seven and nine in Worcester County Public Schools. Teachers will receive professional development and students will be engaged in meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) including preparation and follow-up in the classroom. The MWEEs will also include service-learning and the seven best practices for service learning so that participating students can receive credit for service hours towards their service-learning graduation requirement. The professional development and instruction will integrate instruction about the Chesapeake Bay into the new Maryland Environmental Literacy Standards and also the grade appropriate Next-Generation Science Standards, which will become the Maryland State Curriculum in science.
Duration: July 2013-June 2017
B-WET Funding: $285,000
Nonfederal Match: $81,747

Organization: Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education 
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570231
Project Title: Maryland School Grounds for Learning
Overview: Maryland School Grounds for Learning will provide a collaborative system of professional development and resources that can facilitate the management and creation of natural learning environments. The project goal is to develop online resources and deliver professional development that will result in thousands of students, teachers, and parents designing, enhancing, and using their school grounds. Collaboration and the expansion of a network of experts will support the development of the project and their expertise will be used to highlight and create sustainable practices and processes. MAEOE will also work with the Chesapeake Bay Program Education Workgroup to update and further develop the Bay Backpack website to enhance its functionality, incorporate additional content, and expand its use throughout the mid-Atlantic.
Duration: September 2013-August 2017
B-WET Funding: $285,000
Nonfederal Match: $15,000

Organization: Morgan State University
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570207
Project Title: PLANS II: Plankton, Land Use, and Nutrient Studies at Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve-Maryland Sites
Overview: PLANS is an existing NOAA B-WET-supported program that provides hands-on experiences for students in Calvert County, Maryland, by investigating land use, nutrient enrichment, nutrient limitation, and phytoplankton dynamics in the Chesapeake Bay. PLANS II is a revised curriculum that aims to be more generalizable to aquatic habitats and salinity regimes throughout the Bay and its watershed. In addition, it will employ a train-the-trainers approach and greatly expanded ancillary learning materials to make the delivery of the program more cost-effective and thus more widely adopted throughout the Bay watershed. PLANS II will be piloted at three CBNERR-MD sites for formative assessment, thus providing each site with the training and capability to offer the program to high schools in their regions. The ultimate goal of PLANS is to provide a model for teacher training, a curriculum, and meaningful watershed educational experience activities to help students increase their understanding of humans' role in the eutrophication of the Chesapeake Bay and their role as stewards in helping to restore the health of the estuary.
Duration: July 2013-June 2017
B-WET Funding: $224,321
Nonfederal Match: $52,230

New York

Organization: Monroe Community College
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570201
Project Title: B-WET New York Upper Susquehanna Watershed
Overview: The Chesapeake Bay watershed originates in New York State's Upper Susquehanna watershed. This project will contribute to greater understanding and stewardship of the Upper Susquehanna headwaters region. Teachers will have the skills, resources and confidence to deliver meaningful watershed educational experiences, and students will be prepared and motivated to be stewards of their local watershed. The project includes teacher professional development and active teacher support, with student programming meeting state and local learning standards. Teacher training workshops will be held in spring and fall, for schools in the Southern Tier Consortium agreeing to put a watershed unit into the classroom curriculum of at least one grade level. This will include training in new technologies supporting geographic literacy and environmental literacy. Trained teachers will use our lessons and materials in hands-on student field experiences, including a one-day minimum in the field for water testing, plus stream stewardship activities, mapping and reporting results, and a watershed stewardship project in year two.
Duration: July 2015-June 2017
B-WET Funding: $150,000
Nonfederal Match: $8,000


Organization: National Audubon Society-Pennsylvania
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570292
Project Title: Learn, Explore, and Restore our Watersheds
Overview: Audubon Pennsylvania will continue and expand its Learn, Explore, and Restore our Watershed project--a multifaceted program working directly with students and teachers in York, Carlisle, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. This is a systemic environmental education program that engages elementary students in their local and regional watersheds during multiple grades over multiple years. The project provides high-quality and high-impact watershed experiences that are imbedded into their classroom learning. Volunteers are recruited and trained to assist with the implementation of the program. This partnership will increase teacher capacity to implement meaningful watershed learning in their classroom. National Audubon works closely with teachers and administrators to fully integrate the Chesapeake Bay watershed into their curriculum through in-class and field experiences at local natural areas. The project culminates in habitat restoration projects focusing on enhancing the quality of the water for the people and wildlife throughout the watershed. Technology is incorporated into the project including using data from NOAA’s Data Education Project, materials, GIS mapping, FieldScope, Ebird, and other citizen science programs.
Duration: August 2016-July 2019
NOAA Funding: $70,000
Nonfederal Match: $60,000

Organization: St. Francis University in partnership with Westmont Hilltop School District
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570197
Project Title: Headwaters to Estuaries: Best Management Practices for Systemic Watershed Education
Overview: This project aims to facilitate the development of meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) in the form of watershed integrative curriculum units for an entire grade of middle school teachers, and make systemic the existing watershed curriculum developed by trained teachers and use watershed systems as a context for learning in an entire grade of middle school students. It will also develop active and sustainable watershed learning opportunities in schools through the design and implementation of watershed best management practices and through the establishment of an annual watershed festival. Eight core teachers will participate in summer professional development, curriculum development, and all program components. Eight additional extension teachers will participate in curriculum development as it pertains to their subject area, and implement the transdisciplinary curriculum with core teachers.
Duration: September 2013-February 2018
B-WET Funding: $231,230
Nonfederal Match: $71,174

Organization: Gettysburg College
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570203
Project Title: Exploring the Chesapeake Bay Watershed in Pennsylvania
Overview: Advancing Science, an outreach program of Gettysburg College, serves many areas in South Central Pennsylvania. This project will focus attention on issues of water quality in the local watersheds of this area. The outcomes of this project will be to 1) enhance environmental literacy regarding a watershed area critical to the health of the Chesapeake Bay; 2) effect systemic changes in how environmental education is delivered; 3) create citizen scientists; 4) promote environmental stewardship through action projects; 5) assist students and teachers in communicating what they learn about the watershed. These outcomes will be achieved by training teachers in background content and investigative activities that they will use with their students, and helping teachers to develop a coherent watershed education plan. Teachers will be supported in integrating the investigative environmental activities of their watershed plan into their existing curricula. Students, acting as citizen scientists, will monitor and report on watershed hydrology using NOAA-approved resources such as GLOBE and FieldScope. Advancing Science mobile educators will deliver science equipment and materials to classrooms of participating teachers and will provide support on field trips and in restoration projects. In addition, teachers and their students will present what they have learned about the watershed to other classes in this B-WET cohort as well as to their schools, families, and the local community.
Duration: June 2015-May 2018
B-WET Funding: $291,879
Nonfederal Match: $108,499


Organization: Spotsylvania County Public Schools
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570293
Project Title: Beyond the Field Trip: Developing Environmental Stewards
Overview: Spotsylvania County Public Schools is committed to providing an engaging and relevant science education designed to enable students to develop their civic mindedness regarding environmental issues. It is the schools' vision to ensure an engaging and supportive learning environment, provide a broad spectrum of innovative opportunities, and build lasting partnerships with the community to educate our students. Implementing more meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) is a cornerstone of student environmental education about the Chesapeake Bay watershed. By redesigning the current Oakley Farm field trips for fourth-grade students, implementing MWEEs into the high school environmental science curriculum, and providing professional learning opportunities for science teachers and school administrators, this project seeks to seamlessly connect standards-based classroom learning with outdoor field investigations to create a deeper understanding of the natural environment.
Duration: July 2016-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $25,000
Non-federal Match: $24,208

Organization: Arlington Public Schools
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570298
Project Title: Sustainable Solutions for Urban Stormwater Management through Project-Based Learning Project
Overview: Arlington Public Schools will implement Sustainable Solutions for Urban Stormwater Management through Project-Based Learning, a systemic meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE) implementation that will take place over 36 months. Arlington Public Schools is a diverse and inclusive urban school division located just outside of Washington, D.C. Serving a high population of underrepresented minorities, immigrants, and economically disadvantaged students, this project will provide MWEEs to high school students who have limited access to outdoor learning opportunities. This project includes systemic MWEE implementation across the school system and uses NOAA's resources for geographic literacy and the GLOBE program. The goal of this project is to provide all high school biology students with a comprehensive understanding of how stormwater runoff affects the local watersheds and to assist students in developing solutions through project-based learning.
Duration: July 2016-June 2019
B-WET Funding: $125,000
Non-federal Match: $153,000

Organization: University of Virginia Blandy Experimental Farm in partnership with Frederick County Public Schools
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570265
Project Title: Advancing Environmental and Geographic Literacy through Problem-based Learning in the Middle School Grades
Overview: This project will develop teacher and student understanding in regional watershed system science (environmental literacy), develop geographic understanding and reasoning skills (geoliteracy), provide and promote outdoor-based meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) for sixth-grade students, expose students to a diversity of real-world data, and engage students and teachers in a watershed-level environmental assessment project. Teachers will participate annually in professional development, including a two-day intensive institute and two days of embedded professional development during the schoolyear. These professional development sessions will increase teachers’ environmental and geographic literacy knowledge and will develop multidisciplinary instructional strategies. Multidisciplinary teacher teams will create a problem-based geoliteracy learning unit in which students investigate and propose an optimal location for a new building by analyzing land-use history, social needs, and potential environmental impacts. Students will communicate their project proposals to their school and local community as well as through our project web pages. Both the professional development and student activities will use several NOAA assets including curricula, lessons, FieldScope, GLOBE, and NOAA agency data sets.
Duration: September 2014-August 2017
NOAA Funding: $305,584
Nonfederal Match: $199,063

Organization: Chesapeake Bay Foundation in partnership with Virginia Beach City Public Schools
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570245
Project Title: Virginia Beach Systemic Environmental Literacy Program II
Overview: The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) has partnered with Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) over the last three years to establish the foundation for a systemic environmental education program that aims to reach all Virginia Beach students at selected grade levels with high-quality and high-impact watershed experiences imbedded into the science lessons and curriculum. Through the first phase of this program (2011-14), CBF and VBCPS reached every teacher in middle school advanced seventh-grade life science and sixth-grade science and high school biology and oceanography with professional development that enabled the implementation of meaningful watershed education experiences (MWEEs).Through Phase II of the program, CBF and VBCPS will expand the reach of their partnership, providing intensive professional development for up to an additional 90 teachers. At the middle school level, Phase II will provide professional development that allows already-trained middle school advanced seventh-grade life science and sixth-grade science teachers to strengthen student capacity to take action and use the experiences they gained from field-based investigations. This accelerates the program at the middle school level to go beyond SOL 6-7 (focus of Phase I), and move into SOL 6-9, which propels students to investigate and understand public policy decisions relating to the environment. At the high school level, CBF and partners will reach a new subset of high school teachers beyond biology and oceanography by targeting all earth science and Advanced Placement environmental science teachers, providing professional development that focuses on the integration of MWEEs into the core classroom lessons. The project will use NOAA data, scientific, and education resources including the Chesapeake Exploration lessons and FieldScope program.
Duration: September 2014-August 2017
NOAA Funding: $269,753
Nonfederal Match: $183,687

Organization: Old Dominion University
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570263
Project Title: Policy-Ready Citizen Science Project
Overview: The overall objective of this project is to continue addressing the need for increased scientific and environmental literacy by building upon the prior B-WET-funded Project SEARCH. The project will provide fifth-, sixth-, 11th-, and 12th-grade students and teachers access to meaningful field experiences coupled with corresponding integrated classroom instruction that will enhance understanding of and stimulate interest in studying and protecting the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed. Specific objectives for this project are: 1) enhance urban students’, teachers’, and parents’ scientific literacy with an emphasis on their relationship with urban watersheds and the Chesapeake Bay system; 2) increase interest of underrepresented populations in STEM fields; 3) enhance American competitiveness by increasing students’ abilities to design and build solutions to STEM challenges; 4) increase teachers’ knowledge and use of technologically enhanced, inquiry-based instructional strategies; and 5) enhance students’, parents’, and teachers’ environmentally responsible behaviors. The project employs the use of NOAA’s Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System and CBOS assets, Basic Observation Buoy (BOB), and NOAA’s Chesapeake Exploration curriculum. One novel element of this proposal includes the use of policy-ready citizen science. The data students collect are of such high quality that the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Congress use them in policymaking processes. This is a proven element that has received funding from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. All students in each grade will engage in designing, building, and deploying buoys during their week at STARBASE or within their oceanography class.
Duration: July 2014-June 2017
NOAA Funding: $300,000
Nonfederal Match: $63,840

Organization: Mary Baldwin College in partnership with Staunton City Public Schools
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570264
Project Title: Seeds of Learning Project
Overview: Staunton City Public Schools will implement a program designed to promote sustainable practices in their schools, particularly related to food systems and healthy agriculture. With a direct connection to the curriculum and to the health of the Chesapeake Bay and local tributaries, teachers and students will participate in active investigations of school-based practices related to food systems and water quality, develop strategies for more ecofriendly policies, and take steps to make their schools healthier and greener. The focus of the project will be development of local food gardens and relationships with local farmers for obtaining cafeteria food supplies; promotion of healthy eating habits and reduction of water and food waste at the schools; and improvements to schoolground conservation via soil conditioning, plantings, and erosion/stormwater control.
Duration: June 2014-May 2017
NOAA Funding: $199,477
Nonfederal Match: $63,898

Organization: James River Association
Grant Number: NA14NMF4570266
Project Title: Experience the James: Providing a Watershed Experience to Rural Counties
Overview: Through this project, the James River Association will provide a systemic meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE) focused on the James River watershed to sixth-grade students and teachers in the public schools of two rural counties (Charles City and Goochland) surrounding the Greater Richmond area. The program consists of a four-day professional workshop for teachers to empower then to introduce watershed studies into their classroom, leading up to an intensive overnight experiential program for students at the James River Ecology School. The objective is to introduce students to their watershed and how it relates to the Chesapeake Bay. The James River Association’s partners in this program will include U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Richmond Regional Planning District Commission, MathScience Innovation Center, Charles City County Public Schools, and Goochland County Public Schools.
Duration: September 2014-August 2017
NOAA Funding: $226,948
Nonfederal Match: $39,375

Organization: Elizabeth River Project
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570208
Project Name: The Learning Barge Collaborates with B-WET Veterans
Overview: To address the special challenges of a school system with high teacher turnover, Elizabeth River Project and Norfolk Public Schools will cross-train with two veteran B-WET recipients that have dealt with similar challenges, the Delaware Nature Society and Living Classrooms Foundation. The three nonprofits will mentor each other and Norfolk’s administrators and teachers to identify best practices for challenged schools in impoverished areas .Elizabeth River Project will implement lessons learned from the collaborations to incorporate inquiry-based Elizabeth River and Chesapeake Bay geographic literacy into the Norfolk Public Schools’ required curriculum for fourth grades for the first time. In years two and three of the project, Elizabeth River Project will pilot best Norfolk’s elementary schools. By the end of the three-year project, all fourth graders in Norfolk Public Schools (3,800 students) and 150 teachers will be served.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $50,000
Nonfederal Match: $12,500

Organization: Boxerwood Nature Center
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570209
Project Name: Project NEST (Nurturing Environmental Stewardship Together) Plus
Overview: With support from a previous B-WET award, NEST is now a well-functioning program annually implementing meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEEs) for 1,500 second- through eighth-grade students across three divisions:(Buena Vista City Public Schools, Lexington City Schools, Rockbridge County Schools). NEST Plus addresses the emerging needs of more than 30 previously trained NEST teachers by providing maintenance level professional support as they continue to implement student MWEEs across the K-8 continuum. To strengthen this critical leverage point, NEST Plus will create mechanisms for building leadership within this group, while also providing ongoing workshops, one-on-one coaching, and stipends. The project also serves a new audience—secondary students—by implementing NEST programs for the first time at the high school level, thus completing the NEST–12 continuum. Buena Vista City Schools is ready to implement these MWEE modules systemically across all Earth science, geology, and STEM high school classes; teachers are in place, eager to pilot them.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $82,000
Nonfederal Match: $18,542

Organization: Virginia Resource Use Education Council
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570193
Project Title: Virginia Mountains to the Bay Watershed Academies
Overview: The Virginia Resource Use Education Council (VRUEC) will develop and administer comprehensive professional development on the implementation of systemic meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE) program for Virginia teachers using the collective expertise of VRUEC member organizations. Participating teachers will attend four weekend workshops throughout the year, enabling VRUEC to reach 96 teachers each year of the project. This grant will also support VRUEC in assuming a leadership role in continuing the development and eventual implementation of environmental literacy in Virginia.
Duration: September 2013-August 2017
B-WET Funding: $386,200
Nonfederal Match: $218,750

Organization: Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570199
Project Title: Building Capacity for Successful Implementation of MWEEs in Virginia’s Watersheds
Overview: This project will continue strengthening and expanding the network of highly trained nonformal educators throughout the Virginia who support formal educators in meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE) implementation at elementary, middle, and high school levels. This project is building capacity by training highly qualified watershed education leaders, coordinating their work with school divisions, and cultivating a strong network of schools and local service providers. Initial capacity building is done through training at the Watershed Educators Institute, a 30-hour professional development program that provides both content and methodology for conducting the three phases of a successful MWEE. Additional coordination of a network of educators is conducted, which includes regular communication, resource sharing, and linking graduates of the Institute to schools and partners in their region through Virginia Naturally, regional environmental education teams, and the Virginia Association of Science Teachers science education network.
Duration: October 2013-September 2016
B-WET Funding: $224,907
Nonfederal Match: $83,331

Organization: Ocean Discovery Institute
Grant Number: NA13NMF4570200
Project Title: Replication of Ocean Discovery: An Urban STEM Model That Will Empower Decision Makers and Leadership for the Chesapeake Bay Region
Overview: San Diego-based Ocean Discovery Institute will work with local partners to replicate their successful model that focuses in a single geographic area, a “school-shed,” in order to maximize the impact of its programs and services. This unique approach provides increasingly rigorous opportunities that enable young people to build their interest, knowledge, and skills as they progress toward scientific and environmental literacy and leadership. The model is implemented through initiatives at three levels: 1) community initiatives that generate curiosity as young people, their families, and community members engage in science learning and conservation projects and activities that are relevant to their daily lives, 2) school-based Initiatives that build scientific and environmental literacy as elementary and middle school students engage in hands-on science and environmental service and teachers are supported through professional development and instructional resources, and 3) leadership Initiatives that prepare middle school, high school, and college students to be scientific leaders as they engage in intensive, out-of-school science programs and college and career support services that provide a pathway to science and environmental professions.
Duration: September 2013-August 2016
B-WET Funding: $375,000
Nonfederal Match: $114,152

Organization: Hampton City Schools
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570213
Project Title: Hampton Systemic Environmental Literacy Program (H.E.L.P.)
Overview: Hampton City Schools (HCS) will partner with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation to create a systemic environmental education program that will reach all students (elementary, middle, and high school) in targeted grade levels and courses and embed quality environmental education into the science curriculum. The HCS and CBF partnership will build teacher capacity to develop and implement meaningful watershed education experiences (MWEEs) into science classes. The project will use resources from NOAA, NGS, and other environmental education partners. Over the three-year grant period, the project will:

  • Provide professional development for 30-36 elementary and 30-36 secondary teachers,
  • Develop curriculum that integrates field investigations and MWEE opportunities into the HCS science curriculum,
  • Engage approximately 10 principals and administrators in environmental leadership,
  • Provide job-embedded professional development to enable teachers to successfully implement MWEEs and research/service projects,
  • Engage elementary, middle, and high school students (approximately 8,000) in model MWEEs and research/service projects, and
  • Use appropriate technology to collect, analyze and report data and document the program experiences.

Duration: July 2015-June 2017
B-WET Funding: $240,000
Nonfederal Match: $68,045

Organization: York County School Division
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570212
Project Title: Project-Based Environmental Literacy Program
Overview: The goal of the Project-Based Environmental Literacy Program is to improve the environmental stewardship of York County School Division (YCSD) students by increasing student engagement and achievement in science, improving student scientific inquiry skills, and increasing awareness of local watershed issues. Through a cohort professional development model, teachers will develop the capacity to engage students in project-based scientific inquiry through meaningful watershed educational experiences (MWEE). Over this three-year program, YCSD will partner with the Chesapeake Experience to deliver rigorous professional learning for science teachers through a combination of classroom and field experiences, so they may increase their capacity to design and implement project-based MWEE lessons that incorporate scientific inquiry. This grant award will enable YCSD to systemically implement MWEEs into the district’s science curriculum, providing all sixth-grade, seventh-grade life science, and Earth science and biology students with field experiences and access to authentic data collection tools.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $150,000
Nonfederal Match: $26,906

Organization: Fairfax County Public Schools
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570211
Project Title: Promoting Systemic Stewardship through Engineering Design and Action
Overview: Each year many Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) life science students participate in outdoor field experiences, but far fewer complete an action project to improve the environment. Helping develop and implement a stewardship project is a complex task, which requires that teachers possess a deep understanding of the Bay, factors affecting its “health” and how to conduct project-based learning projects with students. With NOAA funding, FCPS is designing and delivering a professional development (PD) program to 20 life science middle school teachers each year for three years to help teachers gain the requisite knowledge and skills to successfully lead their students in the design and implementation of a MWEE-related stewardship project. PD resources will also be created that can be used by other educators. The PD will be designed around components shown from research to support effective PD and will incorporate the use of a wide variety of human and technological resources—including materials available from NOAA’s Chesapeake Bay Office website—to build teachers' background knowledge about environmental issues related to the Bay and its watershed. All aspects of the PD align with NOAA’s priority to improve systemic MWEE implementation and promote the overall strategic goal of "hands-on learning, teacher training, creating educational resources, and outreach.”
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $150,123
Nonfederal Match: $36,024

Organization: Friends of the Rappahannock
Grant Number: NA15NMF4570207
Project Title: The Student Stewardship Experience: A Restoration Science MWEE
Overview: This project will implement sustainable meaningful watershed educational experience (MWEE) programs in the public school districts of the six counties in the Rappahannock River watershed: Richmond, Lancaster, Middlesex, Essex, Westmoreland, and King George. In order to meet this goal, Friends of the Rappahannock will achieve three objectives: 1) provide professional development to teachers on content knowledge and MWEE design, 2) work with teachers to implement MWEEs at their schools, and 3) incorporate technology into MWEE programs.This project supports the Systemic MWEE Implementation NOAA B-WET program priority by reaching all of the sixth grade students in each district. In addition, this project will use NOAA staff for professional development support, the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System for data collection, and National Geographic’s FieldScope for data sharing.
Duration: July 2015-June 2018
B-WET Funding: $148,787
Nonfederal Match: $16,597

West Virginia

Organization: Cacapon Institute
Grant Number: NA16NMF4570294
Project Title: Emerging Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences for West Virginia Regional Education Service Area Eight to Provide Chesapeake Bay Watershed Education and Training to Fourth- and Fifth-Grade Students
Overview: NOAA B-WET funding will focus on improving the formal education components of PHLOW (Potomac Headwaters Leaders of Watersheds) and assist Cacapon Institute in realizing their goal of moving toward a systemic meaninful watershed educational experience (MWEE) in West Virginia. Cacapon Institute believes there is a need to pursue MWEEs in West Virginia’s Potomac Basin, the West Virginia area within the Chesapeake Bay watershed. This project will expand outreach and develop classroom based and extracurricular activities to promote project-based and STEM learning opportunities for MWEE. Just as important as the funding, a NOAA B-WET award will recognize the importance of pursuing MWEE in West Virginia and promote possible future state participation in the Environmental Literacy Management Strategy. NOAA B-WET’s rigorous evaluation will also bring much needed critical review of PHLOW.
Duration:  July 2016-June 2019
B-WET Funding: $40,000
Non-federal Match: $15,100

Awards from Previous Years