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Center for Instructional Support

OpenSciEd in Massachusetts

OpenSciEd brings together multiple partners, including Massachusetts as one of 10 partner states, a consortium of curriculum developers, and many other science education leaders and experts, to create a complete set of robust, research-based, open-source, K–12 science instructional materials while addressing demand for science instructional materials designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks.

Middle School

Since 2018, Massachusetts has supported and contributed to the development of these open-source middle school science instructional materials through collaboration on a scope and sequence, design specifications, and instructional model of the instructional materials. Massachusetts districts and middle school science teachers have field tested the materials and provided feedback to improve them.

Many of the OpenSciEd units are available with the release of the complete middle school curriculum in 2022. Released units have been evaluated by NextGenScience's EQuIP Peer Review Panel and have received a high quality rating.

Massachusetts completed the 3-year field test of the OpenSciEd middle school instructional materials. The OpenSciEd Field Test in Massachusetts Report summarizes feedback on the OpenSciEd instructional materials provided by middle school Massachusetts teacher participants through two focus groups and one survey.

High School

Beginning in 2020, Massachusetts agreed to participate as a partner state in the development of materials for three full-year High School courses. Teachers in 5 Massachusetts districts have signed on to field test and provide feedback on units in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. Materials for public use are expected to be released beginning in February 2023. For questions about the high school field test in Massachusetts, reach out to Casandra Gonzalez .

Elementary School

OpenSciEd Elementary — Competitive Field Test Grant Opening Soon!

The OpenSciEd Elementary (k–5) Field Test field test will begin in the 2023-2024 school year with the summer professional development in August 2023. The instructional materials and professional learning will be designed to support teachers in engaging students in scientific thinking that moves learning about science (memorizing facts) to figuring things out through phenomena-driven instruction that is collaborative and relevant to students lives. The instructional materials are aligned with the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks/Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and will include ELA/literacy and math integrations. Interested districts are encouraged to apply to be part of the field test. The grant application will be available on the DESE OpenSciEd webpage soon. Please see the flyer to learn more or attend the webinar on February 14th! Reach out to Alex Jones with any questions.

The Massachusetts OpenSciEd Elementary Field Test Information

  • The Massachusetts field test will begin summer 2023 and go through spring 2025
  • Districts can apply for 1 or 2 elementary schools to participate in grade bans: k–2, 3–5 or k–5
  • Districts are eligible to receive funding for classroom science materials for piloting, teacher stipends, substitute reimbursement, and travel costs to professional learning
  • Professional learning will be offered for all field-tested units (four per grade level). Each participating educator will receive professional learning prior to implementing the unit in the classroom and additional support during implementation of the unit.
  • Massachusetts educators will provide feedback to the curriculum developers on the units for improvements and modifications in the final versions

If you missed the webinar regarding piloting and competitive grant information visit the OpenSciEd Elementary webinar slide deck . An FAQ document is forthcoming.

Middle School Adoption and Implementation Support Resources

Grant Support Options

DESE FC601 Implementation Support Grant

DESE has posted a competitive grant to support schools and districts in their OpenSciEd implementation. FC601 is open to districts who meet the following criteria:

  • Have implemented OpenSciEd in middle school for at least one year, and have listed OpenSciEd as their middle school science curriculum on the statewide curriculum report
  • Are not eligible for other grant funding or financial support for OpenSciEd
  • Demonstrate a commitment to continue OpenSciEd implementation through the grant year and beyond
  • Articulate a plan to support sustainable professional learning and support for teachers to successfully implement OpenSciEd in the middle school

The grant will close on May 19, 2023. For more information, visit the grant posting.

BC/OEI Adoption & Implementation Support Grant

In partnership with the One8 Foundation, schools can apply for grants to help support adoption and implementation of the program, access in-state training, and receive additional support and complimentary programming from the OpenSciEd Equitable Instruction Initiative. The application has closed for the 2023-2024 school year. For more information, please visit the OEI website at Grants - OpenSciEd Equitable Science Instruction Initiative.

Professional Learning

High quality instructional materials require substantial pedagogical shifts in the classroom. We highly recommend using a certified OpenSciEd PD provider to support your implementation. You can find a list of certified providers that work with teachers in Massachusetts at Teacher Professional Development Provider - OpenSciEd.

Unit Specific Instructional Guidance

Last Updated: March 17, 2023

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

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Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.