"Background on Surfrider Foundation Teach and Test Program at SM High School:
Last year, the Surfrider Foundation, in partnership with Santa Monica High School, launched the Teach and Test Ocean Water Quality Monitoring Program to engage students in hands-on research and empower them to affect positive change in their community. Through funding from the Surfrider Foundation, California Coastal Commission Whale Tail Program, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, the Jane Goodall Institute Roots & Shoots Program, Santa Monica Co-Opportunity, the Santa Monica Daily Press, and Bike Attack, the Marine Biology storeroom was converted into the “Samohi-Surfrider Marine Laboratory,” fully equipped with scientific apparatus to test bacterial levels in the ocean. On Wednesdays before school, Samohi students sample water at several local sites within the Santa Monica Bay. They then process and analyze the samples themselves in the lab, and share their findings with the local and international communities via newspapers and online networks, including the Surfrider Foundation and the Jane Goodall Institute Roots & Shoots Program."
- Ben Kay, Marine Biology teacher at Santa Monica High SchoolWe walked from the school to the end of the Pico-Kenter Storm Drain. All drains lead to the ocean, and this one funnels right past one of the shwanki-est hotels in Southern California, Shutters.
Standing in ankle deep water, you dip the sterile bag into the surf, trying not to collect sand which is loaded with bacteria.
The trash I noticed had a few stand out characteristics in common.
- by Bette Fishbein, Senior Fellow, Sustainable Products and Practices, INFORM Inc.
Before my group was done with the beach part of our day, I had to leave to go get the pizzas that were so graciously donated by Pizza Fusion. This was my parting view before lunch. The day was a success. We passed on knowledge to people who will one day be left to address the mess we've made of our oceans. I say it was a success, but it was also a hard day for me personally to be out there on a beach that was literally covered in trash.