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Science Education Standards Meeting Approval, Skepticism

Daunting challenges, including implementation, assessment, and maintaining public support, lie ahead for NRC's K-12 guidelines Educators and scientists say they are encouraged by the latest version of the National Research Council's science education standards, an effort aimed at defining what United States K-12 students should know about science. The previous draft had been criticized for being at once too specific and inflexible on scientific subject matter and too vague about the practice o

Karen Young Kreeger


Daunting challenges, including implementation, assessment, and maintaining public support, lie ahead for NRC's K-12 guidelines
Educators and scientists say they are encouraged by the latest version of the National Research Council's science education standards, an effort aimed at defining what United States K-12 students should know about science. The previous draft had been criticized for being at once too specific and inflexible on scientific subject matter and too vague about the practice of science.

But now that the standards have evolved into a form that nearly everyone can live with, the participants' enthusiasm is tempered by what some believe may be even more daunting challenges to the guidelines' implementation: training teachers and developing teaching methods to impart this scientific information; devising ways of assessing whether students are learning the information; and keeping the nation focused on the standards over the long haul.

"We have to attack many fronts at once,"...

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