Tom Raffio, Chairman of the State Board of Education, stated, “The state board is pleased to have taken this important step in updating our science standards to take advantage of pedagogical and scientific advances over the past 10 years. New Hampshire’s new science standards will help our students develop the fundamental academic knowledge and the 21st century skills that will be so important in their daily lives and for any career they pursue. And, thank you to our wonderful science teachers for the important leadership role they played in putting the Next Generation Science Standards in place.”
The new standards will provide a constant science education through all grades. The NGSS describe -- at each grade from kindergarten through fifth grade, at middle school and at high school -- what each student should know and be able to do in the four domains of science: physical science; life science; earth and space science; and engineering, technology and science application.
“Ensuring that our young people develop the skills and innovative thinking needed for good jobs in the 21st century is critical to New Hampshire’s future success, and continuing to modernize education in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and math is an important part of those efforts,” Governor Hassan said. "The adoption of these new science standards builds on our efforts to modernize STEM education and will help prepare our young people for success in the innovation economy."
NGSS have been used and recommended locally across the state as the best set of standards to use because, but not limited to, the following attributes:
For the last three months, seven public forums focus on gathering input about the NGSS were conducted throughout the state for access by teachers, parents, school board members and the general public. A Science Learning Inventory Survey was also designed to receive input from teachers and administrators who might not be able to attend the public forums. In total almost 200 participants attended the forums and more than 600 educators responded to the NH Science Learning Inventory. Many science teachers in NH have been following the work of NGSS from the beginning, participated in the review of those documents, and were pleased with the final outcome. The NH Science Teachers Association approved the NGSS in 2013 which was communicated to their membership.
The adoption of new science standards opens the door for the state to begin to develop a new science assessment. Currently, students are assessed in science statewide in 4th, 8th and 11th grades. The state’s current science assessment, NECAP Science, will be implemented for the last time in the spring of 2017. The NHDOE will work with NH educators over the next year to determine what criteria are important to include in the development of a new assessment.
For more information about the NH’s College- and Career-Ready Science Standards, please contact Barbara Hopkins, Director of Science Education, at email@example.com or (603) 271-5252.