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How Should School Quality Be Measured?

Jun 28, 2016 by Jennifer Berkshire

Almost everyone agrees now that just focusing on math and English is way too narrow and has taken us into a sort of tragi-comic cul-de-sac in a lot of ways. There are some really interesting experiments underway about how you create broader measures of school quality that align more with what parents want, what students want, what teachers want, but also produce the achievement gains that everyone is so focused on. 

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Topics: standardized testing, What is school for?, state-level standards

Next Generation of Misinformation Connect Missouri Blogger & California Science Parent

Jun 12, 2016 by Maryellen deLacy

The digital age, unfortunately, sometimes just makes misinformation easier. With the implementation of the new Next Generation Science Standards in many states, angry parents and opponents are calling for a return to old ways. They base these saber-rattling demands on assertions that the NGSS standards are based not on science or reality, but rather on a backward mode of thinking that will lead to a “lost generation of graduates,” as one angry parent put it.

His rant, posted on the Missouri Education Watchdog blog, kicks off with the statement, “Common Core Standards are part of a larger education reform package that aims to privatize public education and lower our California standards in the name of short term profits and long term investments by short changing our children of an education and catching these remedial students later on at the college level or when they drop out of high school.” 

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Topics: NGSS, California, Missouri, state-level standards

New Jersey Educators Focus Summer on Fall Science Implementation

Jun 7, 2016 by Sara Goodman

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have received considerable support from many states, 17 have already adoptedNGSS, and this summer many K-12 educators will be working the 3-dimensions into new science curricula for the first time. New Jersey is one such state, and its educators are hard at work making their New Jersey Science Curriculum more robust and better aligned with these new standards.

Having adopted the standards in 2014, New Jersey administrators are trying to meet the New Jerseytimeline for integration of the NGSS standards, with full integration of these standards beginning in the 2016-2017 school year for grades 6 through 12. Full implementation for Kindergarten through 5th grade is expected to occur in September of 2017, the following year. 

But at the same time its classroom educators who are ramping up their science curriculum efforts, some are going even further, they’re raising an interesting question: wouldn’t STEM be better off as STEAM--including the arts

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Topics: interactive science, state-level standards, New Jersey, summer

Embracing Vermont's New Science Standards

Jun 5, 2016 by Maryellen deLacy

In an opinion piece written for the Burlington Free Press, science department chair and environmental science and chemistry teacher Jennifer Stainton argued that educators in the state of Vermont have embraced the new science standards wholeheartedly, and are already changing their teaching practices to account for these new standards. 

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards, state-level standards

Illinois Science Educators Recognize Need for New Unified Curriculum

Jun 3, 2016 by Maryellen deLacy



Illinois adopted the Next Generation Science Standards in February of 2014 and as such was one of the first states to do so. Illinois has been committed to these standards from the beginning, acting as a Lead State Partner to help these standards into being and therefore provide a new, unified approach to science throughout the state. 

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards, state-level standards

New Michigan Science Standards Change How Classrooms Teach Science

Jun 2, 2016 by Nicole Lanoue

In voting on November 10, 2015, to adopt the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) as the framework for the new Michigan Science Standards, the state officially became the 17th to back this new approach to teaching science in US classrooms. It joins Arkansas, California, Delaware, Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Connecticut and the District of Columbia. 

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards, state-level standards

New Alabama Science Standards a Resource for A+ Curriculum

May 31, 2016 by Francis Vigeant

On September 10, 2015, the Alabama Board of Education voted unanimously to replace its K-12 science standards with new ones informed by the Next Generation Science Standards. The new Alabama Science Curriculum will require students to meet a variety of standards, including those related to climate change and evolution, subjects the state has historically been loath to teach. 

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards, state-level standards

Classroom Resources Ready for New Arkansas Science Standards

May 29, 2016 by Francis Vigeant

In a unanimous vote, the Arkansas State Board of Education adopted new K-12 Science Standards for Grade K-4 and 5-8 on June 11, 2015. The standards, based on the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), mark the state’s attempts to bring science education into the 21st century with a considerably greater emphasis on real-world applications, inquiry-based learning and modern-day issues. 

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards, state-level standards

Delaware Science Classrooms Align to New Standards, Testing Lags

May 27, 2016 by Sara Goodman


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Topics: NGSS, state-level standards

Classrooms Prepare to Align with New Connecticut Science Standards

May 26, 2016 by Maryellen deLacy

In adopting the Next Generation Science Standards, Connecticut (along with Michigan) officially brought the fraction of states who had done so up to one-third. The new Connecticut Science Standards will align with the Connecticut Common Core in Math and ELA, and will pave the way to teach students in classrooms all over the state how to think as scientists and engineers.

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Topics: NGSS, state-level standards

DC First in the Nation Testing Next Generation Science Classroom

May 25, 2016 by Maryellen deLacy

Not only is Washington DC one of the frontrunners in adopting the Next Generation Science Standards and transitioning the American science curriculum to one more based on practical applications of science and engineering. It will also be the first to adopt a new statewide assessment based on those standards. 

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Topics: NGSS, Next Generation Science Standards, state-level standards

New West Virginia Science Standards: Mining for Uncertainty

May 24, 2016 by Sara Goodman


The adoption of new West Virginia Science Standards has hit a major snag in the form of the potential conflict of said standards with the state’s already troubled mining industry. The standards, which include human impact on climate change as an element students need to consider, has touched nerves around the state, especially in light of an economy that is presently struggling mightily with environmental issues and financial concerns. 

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Topics: Next Generation Science Standards, West Virginia, state-level standards

Kentucky's New Science Standards Inspiring Resources for Students and Teachers

May 18, 2016 by Sara Goodman

Kentucky Science Standards have received widespread support from teachers around the state, who cite the new standards as having the power to both support learning and truly interest students in science and engineering. For that reason, the Next Generation Science Standards – better known in the state as the Kentucky Academic Standards for Science (Science KAS) – have drawn praise and acclaim from educators.

As Tricia Shelton wrote in a November 2015 Courier-Journal piece, “As a science educator for more than 20 years, I have seen countless new initiatives come and go. Some of these efforts, while well-intentioned, weren’t very effective in supporting student learning and igniting students’ innate curiosity.  But the Kentucky Academic Standards for Science (Science KAS) – which are based on the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) – have the potential to do both, and science teachers across our state have embraced them.” 

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Topics: state-level standards

Classrooms to Reflect New Hawaii Science Standards

May 17, 2016 by Nicole Lanoue

The Hawaii State Board of Education adopted the Next Generation Science Standards on February 16, 2016, and plans to implement them over a four-year period beginning with the 2016-2017 school year.

At the time it officially adopted the standards, the 50th state joined 17 other states and the District of Columbia in using these new science standards to inform a curriculum more suited to teaching students the skills and practices they need to succeed in higher education and their careers, and become true members of a global workforce. The 17 other states who had adopted the standards included Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington. 

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Topics: NGSS, STEM, curriculum, state-level standards

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