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Rouge Education Project

What is the Rouge Education Project?

The Rouge Education Project (REP) is a multidisciplinary, school-based initiative to raise awareness of pollution in the Rouge River among K-12 students, and encourage them to take action to restore and protect the river. The project's focus is the study of the Rouge River: its history, current issues, how to monitor its health, how to restore it, and how to become its steward. As a water quality monitoring and watershed education project, the REP engages students' interest, concern, and commitment through real-world education. The project also builds school-community-university partnerships through corporate sponsors, corporate volunteers, and university students who assist teachers participating in the REP. The project is coordinated by Friends of the Rouge.

Schools and teachers click here for more information about the REP!

Who participates in the REP?

All public and private elementary, middle and high schools within (or with an interest in) the Rouge River watershed are eligible to participate in the REP. The program began in 1987 with 16 high schools, and has had as many as 100 elementary, middle and high schools participate in a given year.  Typically, 30-40 schools join annually. 

What does participation in the REP involve?

Schools participating in the REP learn background information about the Rouge River watershed in the classroom, and then take a field trip to a unique sampling site along the river on "Monitoring Day." At the site, students take multidisciplinary steps to investigate the health of the river. They monitor up to nine chemical parameters, conduct a survey of the physical conditions, and sample for benthic macroinvertebrates (aquatic organisms). From their results, they calculate a standardized numerical value that indicates the relative health of the river section surveyed.  What do students gain?  Check it out here.

How is the REP financially supported?

The REP is financially supported by corporate sponsors, foundations supporting environmental education, and other grants received by Friends of the Rouge.

The program also relies on small contributions from participating schools. Learn more here!

How can I get involved?

REP registration for each school year opens in August and closes in November.  No additional schools may join the REP after the November registration deadline (which may vary slightly each year) due to training requirements for teachers and budget/planning requirements for REP staff.

Schools and teachers can get involved by contacting the REP Program Manager at ecassady@therouge.org or by phone at 313-792-9626.  If you contact after registration has already closed for a given year, your name will be added to a list of teachers to contact for participation in the next school year (dependent on available funding).  

Corporations can get involved by participating in the Adopt-a-School Campaign. For more information about the campaign, contact ecassady@therouge.org.



**Note: The map above reflects the monitoring sites where REP participants collect water quality data, rather than the location of their schools.

Rouge Education Project Newsletters


Winter 2014 Newsletter

Fall 2013 Newsletter

Spring 2013 Newsletter

Earlier newsletters available upon request!