Thanks to The Wege Foundation, the Grand Rapids Public Schools are infusing Peter Wege’s concept of economicology into the curriculum. Wege coined the word economicology to define the balance needed between the economy and the ecology. The word summarizes Wege’s advocacy for educating the public on the reality that a prosperous economy depends on maintaining a healthy environment.
The first two GRPS schools that will begin teaching economicology in the fall of 2008 are the seventh graders at City High-Middle School and the sixth graders at the Southeast Academic Center. The environmental principles The Wege Foundation has promoted for forty years will be worked into all subjects for those pioneering students. Each school year a new grade will be added.
City High-Middle School Principal Dale Hovenkamp and his staff have been preparing this program for over a year. A committed environmentalist himself, Hovenkamp is excited that his school is one of the two pilots for economicology. City High-Middle School is the top performing high school in the area, the third best in the state of Michigan.
Along with introducing economicology into the schools, the GRPS is moving toward offering the International Baccalaureate Program. The IB Middle Years Programme is the most recognized pre-university educational program in the world. As its name suggests, the curriculum is based on global learning with 125 countries already participating.
Principal Dale Hovenkamp told a press conference. “The International Baccalaureate program and the Economicology program offer great potential for new and more powerful learnin. The faculty at Grand Rapids City High-Middle is eager to meet this challenge.”