Who We Are

Supporting environmental leadership and climate action in schools

Since 2009, EcoSchools U.S. certification framework has provided independent recognition for K-12 schools.

We support engagement across all levels of the education sector – from students and teachers to parents and community partners – through training workshops and webinars, educational resources, and national campaigns.

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Reaching over 6,000 schools since 2009

The National Wildlife Federation was granted host status in 2008, and launched Eco-Schools USA in 2009. After over a decade of growth, Eco-Schools USA has engaged over 6,000 schools. 

If you are part of a school community and would like to learn more about our program, visit the What is Certification page for more information.

Connecting to an international community & supporting the UN Sustainable Development Goals

The National Wildlife Federation is the U.S. National Operator of the international Eco-Schools program, overseen by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE). FEE is endorsed by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and is aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As a member of FEE, EcoSchools U.S. is part of a community of 73 other national EcoSchools programs around the globe.

How we create change

The EcoSchools program enables students and educators to build customized plans that connect to the SDGs by targeting both behavior change and operational efficiency in schools. Participation in the EcoSchools program increases student and teacher engagement, embeds environmental values into school culture, and generates tangible sustainability impacts.

Our Vision

Collaborating with school communities in creating resilient, just communities for people and wildlife to thrive.

Our Statement of Purpose

Our programming works in collaboration with communities to provide K-12 education that is responsive to and supports leadership and equitable solutions to collectively build a more ecologically and socially just world through informed action.

Our Values

Accountability

Authenticity

Collaboration

Equity and Justice

Growth and Learning

Kindness and Compassion

Vision and Mission Focused

Wellbeing and Belonging


Equity & Justice

“The National Wildlife Federation is an 87-year-old organization traditionally known for its work on wildlife and focus on strict conservation issues. However, we have come to understand that in order for wildlife and people to thrive in a rapidly changing world, we must become an organization that actively challenges systemic racism and oppression because these issues are deeply interconnected. We knew when we began this journey that it would fundamentally change who we are, and that is happening.

NWF commits to actively working against these barriers and providing youth the resources, tools, and opportunities they need to become the next generation of conservationists. Our educational programming is beginning a transformational journey to connect students, teachers, and parents to equitable nature-based experiences where all youth belong and can be connected with nature early and often in their lives."

- Chanté Coleman, Senior Vice President of Equity and Justice

NWF Equity and Justice Journey Report Cover

A Snapshot from 2016—2022

This report includes a timeline of our equity journey, lessons learned along the way, our ongoing work, and challenges and areas of growth as we move forward. Explore this report to learn about the Federation’s equity and justice work over the years with insights and stories from staff.

View the Report