Next Generation Science Standards*

What are “Next Generation Science Standards”*? Who developed them and why? Will they make a difference to students and teachers? Who will profit? And what’s this ASTERISK doing here*? The Education Town Hall explores these new standards with Mary Lord, at-large member of DC’s State Board of Education and writer focusing on science, engineering, and education. Additional stakeholders have been invited to join the discussion in the studio. All are encouraged to participate via phone or email (more below).

DC’s State Board says the NGSS “hold the promise of transforming STEM education and preparing all DC students to succeed, in education, work, and their daily lives.” Major topic areas include engineering, earth and space science, physical science, and life science.

A private non-profit, Achieve, released the NGSS in April of 2013. The standards were several years in development, with input from a variety of sources. The District of Columbia is in the midst of adopting and implementing these standards and seeks comment (see OSSE website).

Ownership of the standards is important to explore, along with content, implementation and testing issues: Note that Achieve trademarked the NGSS and prohibits, among other things, referencing the standards in lower case letters as though they were, say, a set of standards developed for use by educators in addressing the next generation of science students. No such declarations are apparent on the website for Project 2061, which preceded NGSS. What, if anything, does this change mean for educators and education budgets?

Listen live this Thursday, Dec. 19, 11 a.m.-noon (Eastern), on We Act Radio, 1480 AM in the DC area and worldwide via TuneIn.

Join the conversation by calling 202-889-9797 during air time. Or email questions in advance to the show’s host, Thomas.Byrd at, and listen to the archived recording, available shortly after broadcast.

* Footnote

NOTE — “NEXT GENERATION SCIENCE STANDARDS and the associated logo are registered trademarks of Achieve, Inc.”

Required note on all (non-commercial) 3rd-party publications, per guidelines on NGSS website: “…a registered trademark of Achieve….”

Example of improper use – “ACME Book’s new publication features information on next generation science standards for high schools.”

Acceptable Use

[non-commercial] Third-parties should:

Display an asterisk with all NGSS trademarks. The asterisk should be placed next to first prominent use of the NGSS trademark and reference a footnote or disclaimer.

Use the following footnote/disclaimer:
“__________ is a registered trademark of Achieve. Neither Achieve nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards was involved in the production of, and does not endorse, this product.”

Use trademarks in their entirety and may not abbreviate or alter the marks in any way.


BIO: Mary Lord
Mary Lord is an award-winning freelance journalist who has been writing about education and visiting schools across the country for more than a decade. She currently serves as deputy editor of Prism, the journal of the American Society for Engineering Education. Her articles have also appeared in local and national publications, including US News & World Report, where she covered K12 and higher education.

Lord is a long-term resident of the Dupont Circle area and has been active in DC schools since her children were toddlers. she previously represented Ward 2 on the State Board of Education and now serves At-Large.

Note: The bio on DC’s State Bd of Ed website has not been updated since before Ms. Lord was elected to citywide office in 2012.


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