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Rigorous and Research-based Science Standards Approved

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December 15, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The West Virginia Board of Education adopted amendments to its science standards during its monthly meeting in Charleston. After being out on public comment for 30 days, the West Virginia Next Generation Content Standards and Objectives for Science (Policy 2520.3C) will become effective in July 2016.

West Virginia was one of 26 states chosen to lead a national effort to set Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). As a lead state partner, West Virginia guided the standard writing process, gathered and delivered feedback from state-level committees and came together to address common issues and challenges.

West Virginia Next Generation Content Standards and Objectives for Science were generated from the national NGSS. The standards are not a curriculum. Districts, schools and teachers will determine their own curriculum, including how the standards and objectives are taught throughout the year.

The West Virginia science standards describe - at each grade from kindergarten through fifth grade, at middle school and at high school - what each student should know in the four domains of science: physical science; life science; earth and space science; and engineering, technology and science application.

The science standards allow students to think of science learning not as memorization of disconnected facts but as a holistic understanding of integrated concepts. The standards require students to provide evidence of their learning and will equip students with the critical thinking and analytical skills they need to be successful in college and to compete for today's most rewarding jobs.

In addition, the new standards focus on student diversity and equity. The standards also build on each other, meaning that material students learn in one year impacts what they learn in the years that follow. Lastly, when students are learning science, they are also enhancing their skills in reading, writing and mathematics.

For more information about Policy 2520.3C visit http://wvde.state.wv.us/policies/ or contact the WVDE Communication Office at 304-558-2699.

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