Our Work‎ > ‎

Rouge Education Project

What is the Rouge Education Project?

The Rouge Education Project (REP) is school-based environmental education program involving elementary, middle, and high schools from across southeastern Michigan.  Students learn about the Rouge River in their classroom, and then perform hands-on scientific exploration of the river on a field trip to its banks.  They assess chemical, biological, and physical parameters of water quality to determine overall stream health, and report their results to Friends of the Rouge.  Students are further encouraged to take action to restore and protect the river based on their results.
Photo of corporate volunteer and REP student in waders in the river
Our mission:
Promote awareness and stewardship of the Rouge River watershed through school-based water quality monitoring, investigation, and problem-solving.

Our primary goals are to:
(1) Provide opportunities for schools to engage students in hands-on, real-world science, through water quality monitoring of the Rouge River
(2) Increase participants' awareness of the Rouge River watershed by showing them how they impact the river, and how its health impacts them
(3) Empower participants to apply knowledge and awareness gained through the Rouge Education Project to identify and address environmental issues in the Rouge River watershed and beyond

The REP is coordinated and facilitated by Friends of the Rouge, who trains K-12 teachers how to monitor surface water quality through a series of workshops.  Resources are provided to help them plan the Rouge River watershed unit and field trip in their classroom(s), along with monitoring equipment [with the availability of funding].  Friends of the Rouge also trains volunteers and pairs them with each classroom to assist during their field trip to the river.

In addition to Friends of the Rouge staff, guidance and support for the program comes from the REP Task Force, which is a committee of the Friends of the Rouge Board of Directors.