BALTIMORE - High school seniors in Maryland will have to be literate on environmental matters to graduate from now on.
Maryland's Board of Education passed the environmental literacy graduation requirement on Tuesday.
Gov. Martin O'Malley says Maryland is now the first state in the nation to have such a requirement.
The No Child Left Inside Coalition, which pushed for the requirement, says 48 other states are considering similar requirements, a sign of the increasing popularity of environmental education.
Under the graduation requirement, public schools will be required to infuse core subjects with lessons on conservation, smart growth and other environmental topics.
School systems will be able to shape their programs, but they must align with state standards.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)