If so, here’s your chance to hear what changes are in store for Alabama’s science course of study. The Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) has scheduled 11 meetings (one in each regional service center, which is how they’ve divided the state to serve school districts), beginning on Tuesday, May 26, in Hobson City.
“The goal of the presentations is to engage the general public, parents, educators, business and industry, and civic leaders in a general review of science content and standards and to increase awareness,” according to a press release about the presentations.
Each session will last from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. There will be time for questions and answers. Attendees will be asked to write their questions down to be collected. Any questions left unanswered during the presentation will be answered online.
Mark your calendars:
|May 26||CE Hanna School||Hobson City|
|May 28||Scottsboro Board of Education||Scottsboro|
|June 2||Hartselle High School||Hartselle|
|June 4||Oak Mountain High School||Birmingham|
|June 9||Charles Henderson Cafetorium||Troy|
|June 11||Daphne High School||Daphne|
|June 16||Florence High School||Florence|
|June 18||Opelika High School||Opelika|
|June 23||Carver High School||Birmingham|
|June 25||Lowndes County Middle School||Fort Deposit|
|June 30||Central High School||Tuscaloosa|
The current science course of study (COS) was implemented in the 2006-2007 school year. By the time the new COS is implemented in 2016, ten years will have passed.
From the release:
Between now and July 6, 2015, the public can view and provide feedback on the draft of the 2015 Alabama Course of Study: Science. Prior to the review, commenters will be asked to enter demographic information, state of residence, role, child(ren)’s school status, and an optional e-mail address.
To access the review form for the document, please click here. At the conclusion of the 11 presentations and review period, the feedback generated will be reviewed by the State Science Course of Study Committee.
The Science Course of Study Committee will then recommend the revised science course of study to Dr. Bice, the State Superintendent, who will then make a recommendation to the Alabama State Board of Education.
While it’s unknown if there is any connection to this new COS, on April 30, Rep. Mack Butler (R-Rainbow City), filed HB592, which would allow Alabama’s teachers to teach alternative theories to accepted science, including evolution. Similar legislation was passed in Tennessee in 2012, where it was nicknamed the ‘monkey bill’.
Al.com’s Erin Edgemon wrote an informative article about the legislation when it was filed. Butler’s bill has yet to be considered by committee.
It’s important to remember that the COS forms the minimum content that must be taught. Local school districts are free to include additional content standards and curriculum resources that better serve the needs of local students.
Even if you are unable to attend one of the presentations, you have until July 6 to provide your input.
Don’t say you weren’t asked.