Science Standards


South Carolina is required to regularly revise and update the state science standards every 7 years by the Education Accountability Act of 1998. The South Carolina Department of Education is in the process of revising the state science standards with infusion of engineering and cross-cutting concepts. SECC is serving as a critical friend to the core team responsible for leading the revisions of the South Carolina science standards.

Project continued from prior grant:
Science Standards

This project is in the following state: South Carolina.

This project relates to the following ED Priorities:

  • Implementing college- and career-ready standards and aligned, high-quality assessments for all students
  • Implementing college- and career-ready standards and aligned, high-quality assessments for all students

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Previous Work Updates

Project Closed

The SCDE has requested that SECC close this project.

2015

September

SECC staff are continuing to plan and work with the science standards support team. SECC staff have a meeting scheduled with the new director that will provide additional direction and support needed for this team.

August

SECC is continuing to plan with the science standards support team for Year 4 and beyond. A draft plan and timeline will be developed next month. Special planning will occur for the elementary standards section with additional SECC support because the education associate responsible for those standards recently left the state department.

July

SECC staff are planning Year 4 activities with the science standards team to include scaling up of the engineering practices project. Additional Year 4 activities will include evaluation of both training and level of implementation of standards by teachers. Future consideration is also being given to assessment and science assessment literacy.

June

SECC staff will continue to support the science standards team by serving as a thought partner to the continued development of this project. Resources will be provided to the team in an effort to build the capacity of the regional teams to support local districts.

April

SECC is conducting needs-sensing and planning with the science standards team on an upcoming project dealing with the science and engineering practices section of the newly revised science standards. The SCDE is planning to create a regional engineers’ network that will utilize engineers from around the state to form a think tank. This think tank will serve as both a resource and training cadre for regional teacher teams and groups that will provide support for the science and engineering practice standards in local school districts.

March

SECC staff continue to support the science standards team by serving as a thought partner for the refinement of the professional development (PD) sessions for teachers. SECC staff are also helping the SCDE science standards team plan integrated PD sessions to incorporate components of teacher evaluation into upcoming sessions. Additionally, SECC staff are assisting with the development, refinement, and integration of the educator evaluation system for administrators.

February

SECC staff is continuing to support the science standards team by assisting with the creation of virtual spaces for resources and related content. SECC will also provide support for training and professional development sessions for administrators and teachers.

January

SECC staff continues to support the SCDE science standards team by providing feedback on PD materials, office space for the planning of PD sessions and by co-facilitating PD sessions as needed around the state for teachers and administrators. Feedback on the most recent training opportunity was provided by SECC in an effort to increase the level of engagement of administrators in PD sessions. Future TA may include assistance with creating virtual spaces for teachers to learn at their own pace and hosting of segments of training sessions that would allow for participants to review the training and to provide a platform for those who may not have had an opportunity to attend.

2014

October

SECC is continuing to support the science standards team by providing meeting space and serving as a thought partner with the designing of the professional development activities for teachers. SECC is also assisting Dr. Wragg and Dr. Boyd with the development of a specialized training session for low-performing schools.

September

SECC is continuing to support the revision and related training required for the implementation of the new science standards.

August

SECC is continuing to work with SCDE Education Associates Dr. Regina Wragg and Dr. Deanna Boyd by planning Year 3 work, which will include setting training dates for teachers and working with teams of teachers around the state. Evaluation of all sessions will be included with the upcoming work to ensure that changes to the training occur, if needed. Planning is underway for integration activities with other content areas and the educator evaluation project. Additional topics for the science training include Modeling; Engaging in Arguments from Evidence; Obtain, Evaluate, and Communicate Information; and The Bridge to Implementation.

July

SECC staff completed the training and cofacilitating of professional development offerings for administrators across the state. SECC staff and partners along with SCDE staff created a family friendly version of the revised science standards that were presented to the Education Oversight Committee. SECC staff are planning Year 3 work with Drs. Wragg and Boyd to include professional development for teachers and work with a consortium of districts on lesson planning, assessment, and integration of the revised science standards into additional subject areas.

June

SECC is continuing to support the science standards revision project by presenting with SCDE to administrators across the state. Additional support will be provided through planning for technical assistance (TA) in Year 3 and assisting with designing and developing state TA for low-performing schools as they implement the new science standards.

May

SECC staff worked during the month of May to support the science standards revision project by providing office space for planning and through meeting with SCDE education associates Regina Wragg and Deanna Boyd to plan the upcoming administrator sessions. An outline of the training sessions, agenda, and presentation draft were produced during the sessions. Additional support will include creating a family-friendly version of the standards for families and editing the final support document with SCDE.

April

SECC is continuing to work with SCDE Education Associates Deanna Boyd and Regina Wragg on developing support documents and professional development training sessions for school leadership. SECC staff met with the Science Support Team to plan professional development (PD) and to provide technical assistance (TA) with the creation of support documents. SECC staff are planning additional TA support in the creation of both the training sessions and with the science support documents. SECC staff will also initially cofacilitate PD sessions with SCDE.

March

SECC staff are currently planning training and professional development (PD) for administrators regarding the revised 2014 South Carolina Academic Standards and Performance Indicators for Science. They will also work with SEDL’s research and evaluation staff to create an evaluation template for the PD sessions. Two sample surveys were provided to education associates Dr. Deanna Boyd and Dr. Regina Wragg. SECC staff and consultant Dr. Sandra Enger will assist SCDE with review and comments on the support documents for teachers once they have been created by the SCDE workgroup.

2013

September

The revised South Carolina Science Standards have been submitted to the state board of education for review. The following is a link to the revised standards: http://ed.sc.gov/agency/se/Instructional-Practices-and-Evaluations/documents/SC_Academic_Standards_for_Science_Proposed_to_SBE_Oct_2013.pdf

July

SECC Science Consultant Sandra K. Enger met on site in Columbia, South Carolina, on July 16, 17, and 18 with Dana Hutto, education associate with the South Carolina Department of Education, and the South Carolina Science Standards and Performance Expectations writing team. The team reviewed, edited, and updated the standards. During the week of July 22, Enger continued to edit and provide suggestions for revisions.

June

SECC Director Beth A. Howard-Brown contacted Sandra K. Enger on June 17 about serving as a consultant for the project of reviewing and providing input on the South Carolina Science Standards and Performance Expectations for vertical alignment of science concepts. Conference calls with Enger were scheduled and conducted with Howard-Brown, Haidee Williams, SEDL program associate; and Dana Hutto of the SCDE, in relation to the scope and status of the project. Enger agreed to consult on the project, and travel to Columbia, SC, in July 2013 to meet with the standards writing committee.

May

SEDL Program Associate Haidee Williams met with the SCDE staff May 28–30 to analyze the revised the state’s Science Standards and Performance Expectations for vertical alignment of science concepts. A template was also finalized for the format of the new standards and performance expectations developed by the writing team. The template will be used to present to the South Carolina State Board of Education, on the SCDE website, and in professional development sessions.

April

SEDL Program Associate Haidee Williams met with SCDE staff and the South Carolina Science Standards and Performance Expectations team to review the preliminary results from the online survey soliciting feedback from stakeholders on the draft Science Standards and Performance Expectations. The team then developed an action plan to respond to the survey and revise the standards and performance expectations by the end of May 2013. The final results of the survey after it has closed will be shared with the team members to inform the final revisions.

March

SCDE staff and Haidee Williams, SECC program associate, began the process of reviewing the results from the online survey soliciting feedback from stakeholders on the draft SC Science Standards and Performance Expectations. In addition, presentation templates for regional meetings were developed to inform different stakeholder groups such as teachers, principals, higher education representatives, and informal educators about the standards and how to provide feedback through the survey system on the SCDE website. The survey will close May 3, and the results will be used to inform further revisions to the draft standards.

February

SECC program associate Haidee Williams met with the South Carolina Science Standards and Performance Expectations team on February 28 and March 1 to pilot the standards survey questions. The team provided key feedback on which questions would provide useful information to inform the final science standards revision phase. In addition, the team began the development of an information and dissemination plan to solicit effective feedback from stakeholders in the field. Initial plans include overview webinars and regional meetings cofacilitated by the state department and standards team members.

SECC staff have been working with the Office of Instructional Practices and Evaluation to support the revision of the science standards. The 2014 science standards have been approved with the exception of HB5. Recently, the SECC South Carolina state liaison met with the two new education associates working with the science standards, Dr. Deanna Boyd and Dr. Regina Wragg. Dr. Boyd has primary responsibility for elementary standards, and Dr. Wragg is responsible for secondary standards. They will be jointly responsible for middle level standards. SCDE is requesting support with the development of support documents for high school biology and for grades 3–8 and also with preparing and presenting PD to schools and districts on the new standards.

January

SECC program associate Haidee Williams met with the SCDE Science team members in vertical teams on January 16 to examine the alignment of the science concepts and instructional sequence from kindergarten through 12th grade. Work was continued through email to finalize the alignment of the concepts. Each standard was also assigned a code indicating grade level and core disciplinary idea. Final preparations were made to place the draft standards on the SCDE website for public comment. Before public release, the writing team will pilot the draft standards survey to ensure effective data collection.

2012

November

The State Science Standards writing team met on November 16 for two distinct purposes. The high school team reviewed and continued work on the alignment of the standards to assure continuity and coherence between biology, chemistry, and physics courses. The rest of the writing team developed a dissemination plan to solicit targeted feedback from the South Carolina science educators and leaders on the revised K–12 science standards.

August

The South Carolina Academic Standards for Science writing teams finalized the templates and format. Explicit attention was focused on communicating the intent of the standards to South Carolina science educators with minimal professional development and support documents. The SC standards will use student performance indicators to clarify expectations and how to integrate science and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas.

June

The State Science Standards writing teams began developing templates and formats for standards development in Summer 2012. Explicit attention is focused on communicating the intent of the standards to all science educators in the state. The standards will integrate science and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, disciplinary ideas and will include student performance indicators to clarify intended outcomes at each grade level or content area.

May

The State Science Standards Review Panel met all day May 18, 2012, to further refine the State Science Standards Panel report. The group of teachers and administration and state education agency staff reviewed national science standards resources in grade-level groups (elementary, middle, and high school) to determine the benefits and challenges of each resource. The panel consisting of 22 educators agreed that the current South Carolina standards needed to be revised to meet the current educational challenges in science education. This recommendation will be included in the panel report.

April

On April 18, a smaller subgroup of the State Science Standards Review Panel writing team was assembled to develop the draft report for review. In preparation for the writing team, staff from SECC and the South Carolina Department of Education collaborated to condense, categorize, and place the panel’s recommendations into the report format to facilitate the writing team’s process.

March

The Southeast Comprehensive Center (SECC) performed and provided the South Carolina Department of Education with a literature review of STEM standards and program implementation. In addition, the revision of the science standards was provided to the South Carolina Science Leadership Team meeting on March 9, 2012. Then, the first State Science Panel work session on March 20 was co-facilitated by SCDE and SECC. Recommendations from the panel were collected at the work session and for 2 weeks afterwards from the subgroups formed during the March 20 work session.

February

The State Science Standards Review Panel members were invited to participate in the development of a report to inform the revision of the state science standards. The invitation included an orientation webinar and three work sessions. In preparation for the revision process, a team from the South Carolina Department of Education and a member of the Southeast Comprehensive Center staff attended and participated in a national meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina, focused on processes to revise and implement state science standards.

January

Southeast Comprehensive Center staff assisted in the content development of an orientation webinar for the State Review Panel. The State Review Panel is responsible for writing a report to advise the revision of the state science standards.

2011

December

Southeast Comprehensive Center (SECC) staff led and facilitated a meeting with South Carolina Department of Education staff. The purpose of the meeting was to clearly define the process that would be used to: revise the science standards, incorporate STEM within the standards, and clarify the role of SECC in the process. By the conclusion of the meeting, it was determined that SECC would be a critical friend and resource in the cyclical review process created by the Educational Accountability Act of 1998 and would incorporate engineering practices as appropriate.

November

In November 2012, collaboration with the South Carolina Department of Education and the Southeast Comprehensive Center began to revise the SC Science Standards. The work began with three conference calls with the SCDE staff to clarify the revision process and how to incorporate additional STEM components in the science standards.