When New Hampshire Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut was appointed to his post in January, the Republican politician assured critics that whatever his personal beliefs, he would consider himself “the implementation guy” for an agenda largely dictated by others.

At a recent State Board of Education meeting, the new commissioner was sharply reminded of his circumscribed role when the State Board of Education unanimously rejected his proposal to reconsider the state’s science standards.

Just last year, the board adopted the Next Generation Science Standards as the state’s model curriculum after a two-year review process. Many local districts – which aren’t bound by the state’s standards – had already adopted the NGSS, as have nearly 20 other states.

Citing a rating by the Fordham Institute, Edelblut wanted the standards reviewed again.

But board members forcefully pushed back, saying that the state had spent two years painstakingly reviewing standards they had only just adopted, and that initiating a new review would confuse teachers and administrators on the ground.

Bill Duncan, another board member, said the board had looked at Fordham’s critique when mulling the standards but they weren’t convinced.

“Fordham’s view of the standards is from 1950 science teaching. This is not the criterion for New Hampshire,” he said.

The board ultimately voted unanimously not to review science standards until 2022.

Click here to read the full story in the Concord Monitor (April 8, 2017)

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