Recommendations from Successful K-12 STEM Education (2011) Indicators
Districts Should Consider All Three Models of STEM-Focused Schools 1. Number of, and enrollment in, different types of STEM schools and programs in each district.
Districts Should Devote Adequate Instructional Time and Resources to Science in Grades K-5 2. Time allocated to teach science in grades K-5.
  3. Science-related learning opportunities in elementary schools.
Districts Should Ensure That Their STEM Curricula Are Focused on the Most Important Topics in Each Discipline, Are Rigorous, and Are Articulated as a Sequence of Topics and Performances 4. Adoption of instructional materials in grades K-12 that embody the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and A Framework for K-12 Science Education.*
  5. Classroom coverage of content and practices in the Common Core State Standards and A Framework for K-12 Science Education.
Districts Need to Enhance the Capacity of K-12 Teachers 6. Teachers’ science and mathematics content knowledge for teaching.
  7. Teachers’ participation in STEM-specific professional development activities.
Districts Should Provide Instructional Leaders with Professional Development That Helps Them to Create the School Conditions That Appear to Support Student Achievement 8. Instructional leaders’ participation in professional development on creating conditions that support STEM learning.
Policy Makers at the National, State, and Local Levels Should Elevate Science to the Same Level of Importance as Reading and Mathematics 9. Inclusion of science in federal and state accountability systems.
10. Inclusion of science in major federal K-12 education initiatives.
  11. State and district staff dedicated to supporting science instruction.
States and National Organizations Should Develop Effective Systems of Assessment That Are Aligned with A Framework for K-12 Science Education and That Emphasize Science Practices Rather Than Mere Factual Recall 12. States’ use of assessments that measure the core concepts and practices of science and mathematics disciplines.
National and State Policy Makers Should Invest in a Coherent, Focused, and Sustained Set of Supports for STEM Teachers 13. State and federal expenditures dedicated to improving the K-12 STEM teaching workforce.
Federal Agencies Should Support Research That Disentangles the Effects of School Practice from Student Selection, Recognizes the Importance of Contextual Variables, and Allows for Longitudinal Assessments of Student Outcomes 14. Federal funding for the research identified in Successful K-12 STEM Education.

* Because the Next Generation Science Standards had not been published at the time of this report, the committee used A Framework for K-12 Science Education (National Research Council, 2012) to develop Indicators 4, 5, and 12. These indicators can be tracked in relation to the Next Generation Science Standards when they are published.

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