NATO Council Launches School Outreach Program

The NATO Council’s Secondary School Outreach Program officially launched on June 9th 2010 at Bur Oaks Secondary School in Markham. Two grade 10 History classes received a 75-minute presentation on Canada’s involvement in NATO, which follows from the NATO Council’s aim to promote interest in and knowledge of Canada’s most important military alliance. Kirsty Hong, Robert Baines, and William Simmons presented on behalf of the NATO Council and were extremely successful in providing the high school students with an enthusiastic and informative power point presentation that was met with a high level of interest by the students.

Alyssa Chan, the teacher of one of the grade 10 classes stated: “This is exactly what our students needed!” The Bur Oak presentations were a very important first step for the outreach program that plans to be fully in effect for September 2010. Weekly presentations are being planned in high schools across the Greater Toronto Area and York Region. The NATO Council’s goal is to provide high school students with the opportunity to learn more about Canada’s role in NATO throughout the organization’s history, while also providing the students with information to inform them about the possibility of participating in non-governmental organizations like the NATO Council.

Essential areas of NATO that were focused on in the presentation included the creation of NATO, its activities throughout the Cold War, the emergence of NATO’s new identity following the terrorist attacks of September 11th, as well as Canada’s and NATO’S involvement in Afghanistan. An important feature of the presentation is that it compliments the material that is currently being taught in the classes’ curriculum.

In association with the outreach program, the NATO Council is organizing a teacher’s workshop for September 26th 2010 that will provide prospective teachers interested in the Outreach Program with a preview of the presentation. The workshop is intended to be an informal event to raise general awareness with interested educators since their participation and cooperation is essential for the programs success.

If you are a teacher interested in having the NATO Council of Canada present to your class please contact William Simmons at william.simmons@atlantic-council.ca or (416) 979-1875.

NATO Association of Canada
The NATO Association of Canada (NAOC) strives to educate and engage Canadians about NATO and its goals of peace, prosperity and security. The NAOC ensures Canada has an informed citizenry able to participate in discussions about its role on the world stage.