Science

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About This Page

This page provides information on topics such as curriculum, assessment, rules, and professional development. We welcome any suggestions you may have that will improve this page for individuals working to provide high quality science programs for students. Join the science mailing list to receive updates as information becomes available.

The Division of Curriculum Standards and Student Support science team provides direction and leadership to Kindergarten (K) through grade 12 science educators in Texas. The science staff does the following:

  • Assists districts statewide with implementation of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for science
  • Facilitates the development and management of state-funded professional development programs
  • Collaborates with the Division of Student Assessment in the development of state science assessments
  • Assists the Division of Instructional Materials in overseeing the adoption process for grades K-12 science instructional materials
  • Reviews state certifications related to science
  • In addition, the science staff coordinates the Texas Environmental Education Advisory Committee (TEEAC), National Youth Science Camp (NYSC), and the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST).
  • Science staff also provides on-going communication with the field related to science curriculum and graduation requirements found in Texas Administrative Code (TAC).

Announcements

During the 2020 and 2021 meetings, the State Board of Education (SBOE) approved the new Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for kindergarten–high school.

Based on recommendations from the content advisors and Work Group A, TEA convened a separate work group in June and July 2020 to develop recommendations regarding scientific and engineering practices and the process skills in the current science TEKS. The proposed new scientific and engineering practices would replace the current process skills for kindergarten–to grade 12. 

The recently adopted science TEKS are scheduled for implementation beginning with the 2024–2025 school year. A copy of the newly adopted TEKS can be found here.

2020-2021 New Science TEKS Resources 

The Texas Education Agency has developed resources to support districts transitioning to the new science standards during the 2024-2025 implementation. The full TEKS Guide will be released during the summer of 2024.  

The K-12 vertical alignment documents show the alignment of concepts by topic. The standards have been organized into four broad scientific disciplines: biology, chemistry, earth and space science, and physics. 

The Texas Education Agency has developed tools to support districts in developing a local STEM program that is aligned to the high-quality indicators identified by the state. The STEM tools are designed to support a district in planning and implementing a PK-12 STEM program aligned to the Texas STEM Framework and to the Scientific and Engineering Practices in the new K-12 Science TEKS. 

Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST)

The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) are the highest honors bestowed by the United States government specifically for K-12 science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and/or computer science teaching. The awards were established by Congress in 1983. The National Science Foundation, under the direction of the White House, approves the Texas candidates for the national award. If selected as an awardee, the applicant will receive $10,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington D.C. for ceremonies that include recognition from the President of the United States.

The current cycle is for teachers of grade 7 through 12. In Texas, eligible teachers who submit a completed application by the PAEMST deadline, will receive 25 CPE hours.

THE NOMINATION WINDOW IS NOW OPEN

For more information, please visit Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

Texas needs you. If you are ineligible to apply but have the experience and interest to help out, you can become a reviewer or a mentor. Reviewers typically see about five applications from the best math, science, engineering, and computer science teachers around the state. Mentors typically support two or three of these teachers. Training is available for both positions.

2023 PAEMST Reviewers Needed

The TEA is looking for experts in the fields of science, math, computer science, engineering, and technology to review and evaluate applications for PAEMST. This year’s competition is for teachers of grades 7 through 12. The application to serve on the 2023 PAEMST review committee is now available. The completed form is due on or before Monday, January 23, 2023.

2023 PAEMST Reviewer Application (PDF, 249 KB)

Contact Texas State PAEMST Coordinators

If you are interested in helping out for the 2022-2023 review cycle, or have any other questions please contact your Texas State PAEMST Coordinators at tx_paemst@tea.texas.gov.

    Lori Garrett was selected as a 2020 science PAEMST national awardee. Mrs. Garrett teaches pre-kindergarten through grade 4 / science & enrichment at Cactus Elementary School in Dumas ISD, Cactus, TX. Additional information on the announcement for Mrs. Garrett is available on her PAEMST website profile (outside source).

    The 2020 competition recognizes grades 7 through 12 mathematics and science teachers whose innovative methods bring teaching to life in the classroom. The Texas state finalists were recognized in September 2021 at the Texas State Board of Education meeting and are listed below:

    • Fatimah Aboueisha teaches Pre-AP Biology and Biology at Brandeis High School in the Northside ISD, San Antonio, TX
    • William Crump teaches Pre-AP and STEM Chemistry at Colleyville Heritage High School in the Grapevine-Colleyville ISD, Colleyville, TX
    • Michelle Jedlicka teaches Physic 1 and AP Physics C at A&M Consolidated High School in the College Station ISD, College Station, TX

    The 2022 competition recognizes kindergarten through grade 6 mathematics and science teachers whose innovative methods bring teaching to life in the classroom. The Texas state finalists in elementary science are listed below:

    • Denise Carvin teaches grade 1 at Radiant STEM Academy in Irving, TX.
    • Cheri Palmer teaches grade 5 science at iUniversity Prep in Grapevine-Colleyville ISD in Grapevine, TX.
    • Shatara White teaches grade 6 advanced placement science classes at Tomball Intermediate School in Tomball ISD in Tomball, TX.

    Professional Development

    Statewide science and STEM professional development opportunities are available at regional education service centers (ESCs) and through the Texas Gateway.

    Contact the science specialist or STEM Lead at your regional ESC for upcoming professional development opportunities.

    Professional development opportunities are also available through the statewide network of TEEAC Providers. This network of universities, state agencies, museums, and nature centers helps ensure that teacher professional development offered by formal and non-formal providers is educationally sound and consistent with the TEKS.

     

      Contact Information

      Science Contacts

      Math and Science Director, Shawna Wiebusch

      Science Content Specialist, Liz Baker

      Statewide STEM Coordinator, Michelle Sedberry

      Texas Education Agency
      Curriculum Standards and Student Support
      curriculum@tea.texas.gov
      (512) 463-9581