Students at Mundingburra State School became the latest guardians of the reef on Wednesday August 27.
Dr Line Bay, postdoctoral research associate with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies based at James Cook University, spoke to them about the vital role they can play.
'Conservation of coral reefs into the future require strong links between scientists, managers and the general public,' Dr Bay said, 'and school children are very important members of the general public.
'They are very interested in coral reef science and engage actively in coral reef educational activities,' she said. 'They are not scared to ask the hard questions and readily spread the word at home and to their peers of the conservation issues they connect with'.
Dr Bay said that she believed children want the Great Barrier Reef protected for the future.
'Education programs like the Reef Guardian Program will place children in a good position to understand how coral reefs work and what needs to be done to protect them.'
Dr Bay is Mundingburra State School’s adopted scientist and a Queensland Government Smart State Fellowship winner.
Dr Bay will conduct an open class room on water quality and ocean acidification and will demonstrate the effects of CO2 on pH of sea water.
Mundingburra State School’s inauguration into the Reef Guardian Schools Program was part of the launch of a partnership between the Great Barrier Marine Park Authority and the Burdekin Dry Tropics Natural Resource Management to expand the innovative environmental education program. http://www.coralcoe.org.au/