Local educators support proposed science standards | TahoeDailyTribune.com
YOUR AD HERE »

Local educators support proposed science standards

Axie Navas
anavas@tahoedailytribune.com
South Tahoe High School Science Teacher Joel Dameral prepares his students for a fire lab Wednesday. Axie Navas / Tahoe Daily Tribune

California students would delve into a deeper understanding of science topics including climate change under proposed national science standards released earlier this month.

The Next Generation Science Standards, developed by 26 states and science experts over the past year and a half, mark the first national movement in almost 15 years to update science curriculum around the country. The standards build annually on concepts taught in kindergarten and emphasize depth over breadth when it comes to science topics.

South Tahoe High School science teacher Joel Dameral predicts the new standards would revolutionize science learning in the district once implemented. He can focus on teaching fewer subjects and building on models rather than just relaying facts.



“It’s going to be awesome … It’s not just filing out bubbles. Students need to be able to read a text and pull out the information they need,” Dameral said.

The Next Generation Science Standards would build on topics introduced in kindergarten through 12th grade, a coherent science education that Dameral praises. The most challenging part of implementation, which could begin next year, will be developing how departments communicate at the high school, according to Dameral. The science standards follow in the footsteps of the Common Core State Standards, national benchmarks that attempt to link subjects taught in different courses.



Implementation would require new staff training and more integrated courses, STHS Principal Ivone Larson said.

For the first time, national science standards would identify politically-touchy climate change as a core concept and would link global warming to human activities.

“Humans and other organisms will be affected in many different ways if Earth’s global mean temperature continues to rise,” the standards read. “Human activities affect global warming. Decisions to reduce the impact of global warming depend on understanding climate science, engineering capabilities, and social dynamics.”

For Larson, climate change science is a realistic component of high school education.

“We need to present out students with this information. We need to present the most up-to-date scientific information so they’re not afraid to talk about it,” she said.

The public comment period for the standards will continue through May, with three open meetings scheduled for next week. A panel of science experts will review the feedback this spring and present its findings to the State Board of Education. The board will consider adoption of the science standards this fall, according to a California Department of Education press release.


Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around the Lake Tahoe Basin and beyond make the Tahoe Tribune's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.

For tax deductible donations, click here.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User


News

Market Pulse: The Roaring 20s?

|

The market is off to a good start in 2021, even rising as the chaos at the Capitol unfolded. The rise is being called “The Everything Rally” because almost all sectors rose from their March…



See more