Curriculum Framework

New Science Curriculum Framework

The 2016 California Science Curriculum Framework is now available for download from the California Department of Education. The site now provides the complete Science Framework, Executive Summary, and Overview Brochures for communicating with parents about the the NGSS and instructional shifts. Access the Science Framework.

Notice an Error?

If you notice an error when reading the Science Curriculum Framework, please e-mail CDE with the information: SCIENCEFRAMEWORK(at)cde.ca.gov.

Executive Summary

CDE partnered with the Sacramento County Office of Education to provide an Executive Summary of the Science Curriculum Framework. Get your copy here!

Recommended Minimum Core Science Laboratory Inventory

CSTA believes that students learn science best by doing science. The California Next Generation Science Standards require teachers to engage their students in the science and engineering practices. In addition, the Williams settlement legislation has heightened concern for equal access for all students, requiring that all students have the resources they need to receive a quality education, including access to appropriate and adequate science laboratory equipment.

Chapter 12: Implementing High-Quality Science Instruction of the California Science Curriculum Framework provides some guidance on appropriate and necessary classroom space and equipment. The following is an excerpt from that Chapter:

Faithful implementation the CA NGSS will require consideration of classroom space and equipment necessary for students to fully engage in the PEs and supporting SEPs, DCIs, and CCCs. Many physical and biological concepts are introduced in elementary grades, with appropriate modifications for age and brain development, that require the safe use, storage and disposal of materials that were previously introduced in middle and high school.

It is important to recognize that teaching science as envisioned by the CA NGSS requires that students do science. This means that schools and classrooms must contain equipment and consumable materials to allow all students to engage in the science and engineering practices. Although some equipment may be shared across classrooms or grades, all classrooms will need to have materials on hand for ready access to investigations at conceptually appropriate times.

Remember that CA NGSS science instruction begins with engaging students in phenomena, observable features of our natural world. Throughout the course of instruction, students will complete numerous hands-on investigations and engineering challenges, including teacher and student-designed experiments as they explore science concepts related to a specific phenomenon. There must be enough equipment and materials for students to work in groups of from two to four.

While it is impossible to predict everything that will be used in classrooms of each grade, it is possible to predict some minimal needs for each grade band. The list of materials that are recommended by the California Science Teachers Association (CSTA) are viewed as the minimum materials needed for classrooms. It is worth noting that this list represents only the permanent equipment list and makes no commentary about consumable materials (for example, plastic straws, cups, grocery store chemicals, balloons, plastic bags) or teacher preferred materials (like density boxes) that are a critical component to the science classroom.

The following lists represent the recommended minimum laboratory equipment, supplies, and related inventory required in order for a district to support and deliver standards-based instruction in science, grades K-12. The recommended inventories represent the materials that would be required for effective implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards.

Comments and suggestions for additions can be sent to CSTA.

The equipment listed in the high school lists below should be available in every high school so that regardless of which course sequencing model is selected students and teachers have access to these materials.

Visit the CDE Science Curriculum Framework Website

State Board of Education Adopts Science Curriculum Framework with IQC Recommended Edits

On November 3, 2016, the California State Board of Education took action to adopt a new California Science Curriculum Framework. This 1,800+ page document took nearly two years to develop and is expected to play a signficant role in the implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards. The timeline for the release of the framework and associated activities is as follows:

  • Pre-Publication Version: Early January 2017 (This will contain the SBE approved IQC recommendations/edits from the second public review period.)
  • Published Version: July 2017 (Online only- will not be in hardcopy form /2000 pages)
  • Publisher Briefings and Trainings: All of 2017
  • CA Science Framework Rollouts (Rollout #4): 2017-2018
  • Science Instructional Materials Adoption Process Starts: January 2018
  • Review of Science Instructional materials: Summer 2018
  • SBE Action on Instructional Materials: November 2018

Second Draft of Science Curriculum Framework To Be Released for Public Review June 28, 2016

The California Department of Education has announced that the second and final 60-day public review the draft of the Science Curriculum Framework will take place June 28-August 29! This document plays a critical role in the implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards and your participation in it's review is critical.

California Science Framework Overview Webinar Recording - Recommended Viewing Before Reviewing

A webinar recorded on Nov. 17, 2015. This overview is designed to provide information about the development of the Draft Science Framework, including chapter content, suggestions for making comments to CDE, and suggestions for hosting your own framework discussion and feedback gathering prior to diving into the document. This module is developed by Anthony Quan (Los Angeles County Office of Education) and Jared Mar (Tulare County Office of Education), in partnership with the CDE, CSTA, California Science Project, K12 Alliance, and County Offices of Education. https://connect.lacoe.edu/p9mbfn67fzs/

About Curriculum Frameworks

"Curriculum frameworks provide guidance for implementing the content standards adopted by the State Board of Education (SBE). Frameworks are developed by the Instructional Quality Commission (IQC), formerly known as the Curriculum Development and Supplemental Materials Commission, which also reviews and recommends textbooks and other instructional materials to be adopted by the SBE. " (Source: California Department of Education, retrieved November 17, 2013)

Standards are often referred to as the "what" students should learn and be able to do, the curriculum framework is the document that provides the "how."

New Science Curriculum Framework for California

California is embarking on a revision of the Science Curriculum Framework to support the implementation of the California Next Generation Science Standards adopted by the State Board of Education in 2013.

The current timeline for the revision of the Science Curriculum Framework puts the start of first 60-day public review period on November 17, 2015.

Science Curriculum Framework Resources and Links

Science Curriculum Framework and Evaluation Criteria Committee (CFCC)

The CFCC will play a significant role in the revision of the Science Framework for California Public Schools, Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve (Science Framework). The Science Framework will be revised to incorporate and support the Next Generation Science Standards for California Public Schools, Kindergarten through Grade Twelve (CA NGSS), adopted by the SBE in September 2013, and to reflect current research in science instruction. The CFCC provides input into the initial draft of the revised framework in accordance with guidelines approved by the SBE.

CFCC members include single-subject and multi-subject credentialed teachers; college and university personnel representing academic departments and schools of education; and representatives of citizen groups, educational organizations, industry, or other agencies. The Instructional Quality Commission (IQC), which serves as an advisory body to the SBE, recommends applicants for the CFCC to the SBE. CFCC members will be required to come the meetings having read and responded to draft chapters of the framework, provide additional input and resources for the chapters, and in some cases they may be called upon to provide text for the chapters as well. Members of the CFCC will be appointed by the State Board of Education at their July 10-11, 2014 meeting.

The meetings of the CFCC will take place in Sacramento at the California Department of Education (1430 N Street, Sacramento, CA)

  • September 9—10, 2014
  • October 9—10,2014
  • November 5—6, 2014
  • December 11—12,2014 Rescheduled
  • January 22—23,2015
  • February 26—27, 2015 Rescheduled
  • March 26—27, 2015
May 20—21, 2015

If you would like to provide input but are not able to attend a meeting in person, you may send your comments via email to scienceframework(at)cde.ca.gov.