The Next Generation Science Standards and the Quest towards Culturally Responsive Pedagogy: Perceptions of K-12 Educators
Keywords:Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), science curriculum, culturally responsive teaching (CRT), K-12 science education.
The K-12 education system is increasingly becoming more culturally diverse. Due to this change in student population diversity, the public, policy makers, employers, and educators agree on the need to change how science is taught in classrooms. Answering this call, states are rushing to adopt the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in K-12 public schools. However, there is need to assess how culturally responsive teaching (CRT) can be meshed with NGSS to achieve desired results. This study explored teachers’ views on the benefits and implications of using CRT in K-12 science education under NGSS. Survey data were collected from K-12 teachers in 18 states in the US using an online questionnaire. Based on our data, 86.36% of the respondents had a positive view of the potential impact of integrating CRT with NGSS. However, connecting CRT and NGSS to the science content emerged as one of the major concerns among the teachers. The study also found that teacher training programs on the awareness and adoption of both NGSS and CRT are still needed.
Based on these findings, three major recommendations were proposed: 1) phased-adoption and re-assessment of the CRT-NGSS combination on student success; 2) immersive professional development for in-service teachers on how to include NGSS in the existing science curricula; and 3) evaluation of how CRT fits into the new science standards.
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