High school students’ science quotient could rise because the Eugene School District soon will receive new science curriculum materials following a unanimous school board vote adopting the new coursework Monday.

It’s been more than a decade since the district has upgraded its science curricula at all grades, district documents show.

Materials included in the adoption of the new curricula include text books (either actual books or online “tech books”) for each student, interactive online resource subscriptions for each student, teacher editions and resources and professional development tools for instructors.

“The district is changing the science sequence and adding an earth science course for students to learn the full array of science standards in NGSS.” NGSS stands for Next Generation Science Standards.

The Next Generation Science Standards require a shift in how students approach learning about various scientific concepts by emphasizing three dimensions: content, scientific and engineering practices, and “cross-cutting concepts,” or being able to use core concepts to evaluate a variety of situations.

According to state education officials, most districts teach those three concepts as separate entities, which can make both instruction and assessment more difficult.

The new standards aim to have students use all three dimensions at once and prepare them for college and careers. The standards also are focused on a deeper understanding and application of scientific content that builds over time and is integrated into other areas of learning, such as English, language arts and math.

Click here to read the full story in The Register-Guard (May 5, 2017)

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