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First Draft of 'Next Generation' Science Standards Coming Soon

The first public glimpse of a draft of common science standards for states will come in early spring, we've just learned.

Currently, 26 states are playing a lead role in helping to develop the Next Generation Science Standards, which organizers of the effort hope will eventually be adopted by all—or at least most—states.

The plan is that by late March or April, the draft standards will be made available for public comment, according to Stephen Pruitt, a vice president at Achieve, the Washington-based group facilitating the standards-writing process.

"We are hard at work. We are preparing for a public draft," he told me yesterday.

There will actually be two rounds of public comment on the standards document, said Pruitt, who previously was a science supervisor at the Georgia Department of Education. The second public review will occur in the "third quarter" of the year, he predicted. And the final document, he said, will be completed by year's end.

The states are working in partnership with the National Research Council, the National Science Teachers Association, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science to develop the new standards. Last summer, an NRC panel of experts wrapped up work on a framework to guide the development of the standards. The framework identifies the core ideas and practices in the natural sciences and engineering that all students should know by the time they graduate.

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