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Growing Potential

There is growing potential for improving elementary school science education in the Bay Area.

The present landscape for science education in California also offers unique circumstances for science education. The new curriculum adoption and the addition of a 5th grade state science assessment present new supports and accountability pressures for schools in elementary science education. With 90% of school districts planning to select new materials by June 2008, many districts are taking a close look at their science education programs. Some schools and districts recognize the possibility of new materials and the new assessment requirements as opportunities for improvement and plan to employ one or more of the following improvement strategies:

Further, support for these improvement strategies may be found outside of the public education system. Research indicates that external organizations currently play a key role in supporting Bay Area elementary school science education. Many districts report receiving critical and high quality support (Figure 5) and resources from external community sources. And both multi-subject and science specialists rate the quality of the PD they receive from these external sources higher than those within the public school system (Figure 6).



Finally, teachers indicate desire for additional professional development.

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