Tami Plein, Science Specialist – adapted from New state task force to review science standards, August 15, 2013
The Next Generation Science Standards Task Force met for the first time on Wednesday, Aug. 21 in Des Moines. Among the 28 Iowans who will be serving on a state task force were Carleigh Cass and Aaron Willis, Central Lee Middle School students, and Ken Harrison, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, Chariton Community School District.
The new science standards represent a multi-state effort to develop a common set of learning expectations in science for students in kindergarten through high school. The Next Generation Science Standards are internationally benchmarked and identify science and engineering practices and content with a focus on preparing students in kindergarten through 12th grade to go to college or to enter the workforce. The standards were released in April and are available for voluntary adoption in states.
Members of the Next Generation Science Standards Task Force will make a recommendation to the State Board of Education about whether the science standards should be adopted as part of the Iowa Core, the statewide academic standards in math, science, English/language arts and social studies.
Twenty-six states, including Iowa, worked to develop the Next Generation Science Standards during a two-year collaborative state-led process that was managed by Achieve, a nonprofit education organization. About 70 Iowans were involved, including K-12 educators, science consultants, higher education faculty, and Iowa Department of Education staff members.
Iowa’s role as a lead state partner included gathering and delivering feedback from state-level committees as the standards were being drafted. Lead state partners also agreed to give serious consideration to adopting the Next Generation Science Standards.
Two other task force meetings have been scheduled for Sept. 18 and Oct. 16. Meetings will be open to the public.
To read the Next Generation Science Standards, visit http://www.nextgenscience.org/.