26 States Adopt New Science Curriculum

Includes climate change education

The Next Generation Science Standards developed by the National Research Council, the National Science Teachers Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Achieve, and two dozen states are set to be released this month. The standards will recommend that educators teach the evidence for man-made climate change starting in elementary school.

Twenty-six states helped write the standards and are expected to adopt them. Another 15 have indicated they may accept them as well. In total, this could bring climate change education into the classrooms of more than 40 states.

The nation's education publishers, such as Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and McGraw-Hill, are already trying to incorporate the recommendations into their texts, but not all agree on the changes.

James Taylor, a senior fellow at the conservative Heartland Institute, which is developing a school curriculum that promotes climate skepticism, said the standards' stance on climate change is based on "unscientific speculation and hype." But he also said the group has no plans to fight their adoption by the states.

Texas, one of the largest textbook buyers, is one of the few states planning not to adopt the standards. In the past, this might have caused publishers to ignore changes, but the introduction of e-textbooks has reduced the clout of larger states.

Some states have passed "academic freedom bills" bolstered by conservative groups that mandate teaching dissenting views on climate change, but so far the new standards have escaped widespread criticism.

Via Inside Climate

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