Reef Guardian Schools

310 schools and more than 127,000 students and 8218 teachers are helping build the resilience of the Great Barrier Reef through our Reef Guardian Schools program.

The program began in 2003 and sees students, teachers, their communities and local environmental agencies make positive environmental changes for the marine environment.

A key objective of the Reef Guardian Schools program is to create awareness, understanding and appreciation for the Reef and its connected ecosystems.

This fosters stewardship and promotes a community culture of custodianship for Reef protection.

It empowers students and gives them a sense of involvement in the bigger picture and encourages them to make a positive difference.

Students team up with others in their community to actively participate in activities aimed at improving catchments, water quality, sustainability, and Reef health.

This includes environmental and sustainability projects within their classrooms, their school grounds and local areas such as native habitat revegetation, cleaning up beaches and recycling.

Schools and teachers involved in the program have access to annual activities and education resources to assist with delivering curriculum on the Great Barrier Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Science Teaching Units have been developed from the Key Focus Areas of the Great Barrier Reef Outlook Report 2009 and are linked to the Australian Science Curriculum. The units encourage students, teachers and their communities to follow the main aim of Reef Guardians — to be stewards of the environment.

The Reef Beat education series, the amazing Great Barrier Reef, let's keep it great, takes students on a journey of why the Great Barrier Reef is amazing, both in beauty and scale, and highlights its importance as a national and international icon. This resource includes a curriculum-linked activity book and a poster (best viewed and printed in A0 size) which features a map of the Great Barrier Reef Region.

Reef Guardian Schools Collage

Becoming a Reef Guardian School

The Reef Guardian Schools program operates with schools in the Great Barrier Reef catchment. 

For more information on the program and to register your interest, contact the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.


Reef Guardian Participant Interviews

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Reef Guardian interview with Lynne Shanks of Cawarral State School.

Image of ReefGuardian Participant interview

Reef Guardian interview with Shelly De Ruyter of Thuringowa State High School

Image of ReefGuardian Participant interview

Reef Guardian interview with Caitlyn of Thuringowa State High School


  • Reef Guardian School

    Reef Guardian school group standing in the shade of some trees

    Reef Guardian schools across Queensland are taking positive action for the environment. Watch the commercial.