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Science Framework Focus Group Letter

Letter Head: Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, California Department of Education

October 15, 2013

Dear County and District Superintendents and Charter School Administrators:


The California Department of Education (CDE) is pleased to announce that it is recruiting members for five focus groups to provide input on the upcoming Science Framework for California Public Schools, Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve (Science Framework). The Science Framework will incorporate and support the Next Generation Science Standards for California Public Schools, Kindergarten through Grade Twelve, adopted by the California State Board of Education (SBE) in September 2013, to reflect current research in science instruction. Curriculum frameworks provide guidance to teachers, administrators, and parents on how a standards-based curriculum is implemented in the classroom.

Pursuant to the California Code of Regulations, Title 5, Section 9511(c), the CDE will convene at least five focus groups across California. Each focus group will include between 10 and 15 invitees who will be selected to ensure balanced representation of regions, types of schools, and grade-level experience. Members of the focus group must be educators at the time of appointment. California Education Code Section 44013(a) defines an educator in this way:

“Educator” means a certificated person holding a valid California teaching credential or a valid California services credential issued by the commission who is employed by a local education agency or by a special education local planning area and who is not employed as an independent contractor or consultant.

Interested individuals are encouraged to apply. County and district superintendents and charter school administrators are invited to nominate individuals for appointment to a focus group and distribute the application link to potential applicants. Please note that there is no stipend for service on a focus group, and no reimbursements for travel costs or substitute replacements can be provided by the CDE.

The focus group meetings will be open to the public, and comments made by both focus group members and members of the public at each meeting will be forwarded to the Instructional Quality Commission and the SBE for consideration.

Focus group meetings are currently planned for the following dates and locations:

  • January 25, 2014: Exploratorium, Pier 15, San Francisco

  • January 30, 2014: San Diego County Office of Education

  • January 31, 2014: Orange County Office of Education

  • February  4, 2014: CDE (Sacramento)
    • A video conference will be hosted at the CDE in Sacramento and available at the Siskiyou County Office of Education, Shasta County Office of Education, and Humboldt County Office of Education

  • February 11, 2014: Fresno County Office of Education

Each focus group meeting will be held in the late afternoon. A more detailed agenda will be sent to participants and posted on the CDE Curriculum Frameworks Web page at prior to each event.

To apply to be a member of a focus group, please use the online application form. This form is located on the CDE Curriculum Frameworks Web page at the link above. Online applications and professional résumés must be e-mailed to no later than 3 p.m. on December 2, 2013.

If you have any questions regarding focus groups, please contact Bryan D. Boyd, Education Programs Consultant, Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division, by phone at 916-445-4910 or by e-mail at


Tom Torlakson


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