Update on the Science TEKS Review Process

The Science TEKS Review & Revision process was temporarily delayed in March by the impact of COVID-19 on Texas schools, communities and TEA. In recent weeks, Work Group B has been convened, and the process has begun again. Work Group B is focused on high school courses and is currently meeting to create a draft for SBOE review. STAT representatives connected with TEA officials to get an update on the process.

We are pleased to report that STAT goals are continuing to be considered and implemented, as evidenced in the following Q & A with TEA. STAT is grateful for the collaborative nature of this process with stakeholders and Agency staff, guided by the thoughtful leadership from the members of the SBOE.

Q & A with TEA: Science TEKS Review

Q: Where are we in the process/timeline, in general? Are the Science TEKS going to be done by November 2020?
A: The short answer is that the coronavirus has caused a delay in the process. Currently, agency staff isn’t working at the Travis Building. All parties, including the Work Groups are working remotely. The longer answer is that the review and revisions timeline should only be considered a draft, and it was developed prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. As an example, Work Group B has met twice and there are four more meetings planned. The chart on the process document has only three meetings listed. At this point, the entire process is expected to take twice as long as originally planned. The internal goal of the current SBOE panel is to have the four high-school courses done by their final meeting in November. They will begin working on K-8th grade in January 2021 with a new SBOE.

Q:  Is Work Group B still meeting and what’s next for this part of the process?
A: Work Group B continues to meet. They’ve met seven times and will meet one more time before the meeting. They are expected to continue to meet following the SBOE meeting but those meetings have not yet been scheduled.

Q: What is happening at the June 29th SBOE meeting related to TEKS and the Science TEKS specifically?
A: Staff will provide an update on TEKS for all subjects. Related to science, the update will consist of describing where Work Group B is in the process of completing their work. We may learn how many more meetings they’ll require and where any issues might be noted. The Work Group is not expected to have a complete draft of their work ready prior to the June 29th SBOE meeting. As mentioned above two additional meetings are currently scheduled for after this date.

Q: How does the SBOE/TEA feel about Science & Engineering Practices as it relates to the science TEKS?
A:  Work Group A made the recommendation to incorporate Science & Engineering Practices into the TEKS. SBOE members directed staff to provide the work groups with ‘A Framework for K-12 Science Education’ as a resource to inform recommendations for revision of the science TEKS. TEA convened a work group to make specific recommendations related to the science and engineering practices. Those recommendations have been shared with Work Group B and with the SBOE members and will be posted to the TEA website this week.

Q: Are Science & Engineering Practices going to be embedded into the TEKS rewrite for all grades?
A: Yes.

Q: Will the TEKS review process allow for vertical alignment?
A: The content advisors and Work Group A have made the recommendation for vertical alignment. As in the TEKS review process for Health and PE, the workgroups will work backward beginning with high school. Once those courses have been developed, the process will review middle school, then science at the elementary grade level.

Science TEKS Revision Homepage
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