2020 Course Design, Selection and Adoption of Instructional Materials

  • The board recognizes its responsibility for the improvement and growth of the educational program of the schools.  To this end, the course designs will be evaluated, adapted and developed on a continuing basis. Instructional materials will be selected to ensure alignment with state learning standards and will enable all students to master foundational skills and knowledge to achieve college and career readiness.

    Definitions

    For the purpose of policy and procedure 2020, the following definitions will apply: 

    Course Design is the process that includes identifying and sequencing essential content supporting students’ knowledge and skill development towards state learning standards. Course design involves developing priority learning goals, instructional materials, scope/sequence/pacing guides, and professional development activities to provide teachers with the knowledge and skills they need to implement the course effectively.

    Instructional Materials are all materials that are used as learning resources to help students attain the knowledge and skills required to meet state learning standards. These instructional materials may be printed or digital and may include textbooks, technology-based materials, other educational media, and assessments. They may carry different licensing types from open to all rights reserved. For the purposes of this policy, there are five categories of instructional materials:

              Core Instructional Materials are the primary instructional resources for a given course. They are district-approved and provided to all students to help meet learning standards and provide instruction towards course requirements.

              Alternative Core Materials are the primary instructional materials for a given course that are used with a subset of students. These materials are district-approved, intended to replace approved core materials, and may be used for specialized course offerings or flexible learning environments.

              Intervention Materials are designed to support strategic or intensive interventions for students who are at risk of not meeting state learning standards for the course. These materials are district-approved and are used with students to accelerate progress toward particular learning goals based on systematic assessment, decision-making, and progress monitoring.

              Supplemental Materials are used in conjunction with the core instructional materials of a course. These materials are district-approved, selected within district-established guidelines, and are designed to extend and support instruction. They include, but are not limited to, books, periodicals, visual aids, video, sound recordings, computer software and other digital content.

              Temporary Supplemental Materials are those items used in conjunction with the core instructional materials of a course that are of interest or value for a short period of time. These materials are principal-approved, selected within district-established guidelines, and are not intended to supplant the adopted core instructional materials, nor be used on a regular instructional basis. Examples might include timely articles from relevant, reliable sources, websites, or news broadcasts. The use of temporary supplemental materials for time periods of over one year requires consideration of the material as either part of the core instructional materials for a course or supplemental material for the course depending on the nature and scope of the material.

    Course Design and Materials Committee (CDMC) is the district-appointed body that makes course design, modification, and discontinuation recommendations to the superintendent or designee, core instructional materials adoption recommendations to the school board according to district procedures, acts upon requests for core materials approval by certificated staff, and acts upon citizen requests for reconsideration of instructional materials.

    Course Design, Modification, and Discontinuation

    The superintendent or designee will establish procedures for course design, modification, and discontinuation that ensure relevance, rigor, and alignment of all courses to state learning standards.

    Selection and Adoption of Instructional Materials

    The primary objective in selecting instructional materials is to support student achievement of state learning standards in all courses.  All instructional materials will be selected in conformance with:

    1. Applicable state and federal laws;

    2. Goals and/or learning standards of the district and state; and

    3. Procedures established by the superintendent or designee that address the criteria detailed in the corresponding procedure 2020P. 

    The board is responsible for the adoption of all core instructional materials used in the district. The superintendent will ensure that a list of all core instructional materials used within the school district is maintained at the district office and available for public review.

    The superintendent or designee will establish procedures for the adoption of core instructional materials and the selection of alternate core, intervention, supplemental, and temporary supplemental instructional materials. The five categories of instructional materials will be aligned to state learning standards and must be appropriate for the instructional program and developmental levels and interests of the students served.

    Cross Reference:
    Board Policy 2027        District Ownership of Staff-Created Work

    Legal References:
    RCW 28A.150.230          Basic Education Act – District School Directors Responsibilities
    RCW 28A.320.170          Tribal history and culture [as amended by SSB 5433]
    RCW 28A.320.230          Instructional materials – Instructional materials committee
    RCW 28A.405.060          Course of study and regulations – Enforcement – Withholding salary warrant for failure
    RCW 28A.640                  Sexual Equality
    WAC 180-44-010            Responsibilities related to instruction
    WAC 392-190-055         Textbooks and instructional materials – Scope – Elimination of sex bias – compliance timetable

    ADOPTED:  02/25/1999
    REVISED:  11/22/11; 8/22/13; 6/23/2015; 3/24/16; 3/23/17

    Procedure No. 2020P Course, Design, Selection and Adoption of Instructional Materials

    For the purposes of this procedure, the definitions from Policy 2020 will apply. 

    District course design and core instructional materials should be regularly reviewed to ensure ongoing alignment with state law, teaching and learning standards, and research-based best practices. All students will receive high quality core instruction and, as appropriate, strategic, intensive and advanced supports matched to their learning needs.

    Course Design, Modification, and Discontinuation

    Existing Courses

    The superintendent or designee will establish a regular cycle of course design review modification, and discontinuation. Discontinuation of courses may be initiated on an annual basis as determined by the superintendent and designee. The course review cycle will be based on student learning needs, changing demographics, and funding.  The cycle should cover each content area to ensure current course relevance. The course design process will review:

    • Relevance, rigor, and alignment to state learning standards;
    • Efficacy of instructional materials to support student learning; and
    • Processes and resources used to assess student progress and achievement and address teacher professional learning.

    Recommendations of this review may lead to:

    • Affirmation of continued use of current processes and instructional materials;
    • Establishment of a timeline for completion of recommended tasks;
    • Creation and assignment of tasks to subcommittees as required to select, write, or revise the course design;
    • Recommendation of new instructional materials selection to the school board;
    • Design of course implementation and staff professional development plans;
    • Identification of projected budget needs in accordance with established timelines;
    • Ongoing communications with impacted stakeholders; and/or
    • Discontinuation of courses.

    Social Studies Curriculum Review or Adoption

    In compliance with RCW 28A.320.170, when the board adopts or reviews the district’s social studies curriculum, it will incorporate history, culture and government of the nearest federally recognized Indian tribe or tribes utilizing curriculum available on the OSPI website. The district may modify the OSPI curriculum to incorporate elements that have a regionally specific focus or may incorporate the curriculum into existing instructional materials.

    During regularly scheduled reviews and revisions of their social studies and history curriculum thereafter, the district will collaborate with any federally recognized Indian tribe within its boundaries and with neighboring Indian tribes to expand and improve instructional materials about Indian tribes and to create programs of classroom and community cultural exchange.

    The district will collaborate with the office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction on curricular areas regarding tribal government and history that are statewide in nature.

    New Courses or Major Modifications to Existing Courses

    New course offerings or major course modifications that propose significant changes to course objectives or scope will be approved by the superintendent or designee prior to scheduling and implementation to ensure that the course is rigorous, utilizes appropriate instructional materials, and is a carefully structured component of the school’s college and career pathways.

    When the implementation of new or modified courses requires the adoption of new instructional resources, those resource recommendations will be submitted to the superintendent or designee and forwarded to the Course Design and Materials Committee for review and consideration for board adoption.

    Selection and Adoption of Instructional Materials

    For the purposes of this procedure, instructional materials used in the school district will be classified as core, alternative core, intervention, supplemental, and temporary supplemental and shall be selected according to the procedures that follow. The principal is responsible for ensuring the continuing familiarity of their certificated staff with the requirement of this policy and procedure. The district office will provide such technical assistance as may be necessary to accomplish this.

    Roles and Responsibilities in the Selection and Adoption of Instructional Materials
    Instructional Material Type

    Instructional Material Delivery Formats

    Instructional materials may be delivered in many formats, and may include textbooks, technology-based materials, or other educational media. 

    Open Educational Resources

    Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching and learning resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others. A wide variety of free, high quality instructional content is available from supplemental to core instructional materials. Districts are encouraged to consider OER when selecting instructional materials. OER are subject to the same selection and adoption procedures as other instructional materials outlined in this procedure.

    Technology-based Resources

    When instructional materials are technology-based, district educational technology staff will be consulted regarding the technological impacts of the suggested program. Equity of access for students and teachers must be considered for all core materials delivered in digital formats.

    Core Instructional Material Selection

    Course Design and Materials Committee

    The Course Design and Materials Committee (CDMC) is formed by the superintendent or designee to establish and monitor such procedures as may be necessary for course design and/or the evaluation and recommendation of core instructional materials used by the district in conformance to stated criteria. The committee will also act upon requests for core materials approval and will evaluate and act upon citizens’ requests for reconsideration of core, alternative core, intervention or supplemental instructional materials.

    Committee meetings will be held as determined by the superintendent or designee.  Special meetings may also be called by the superintendent or designee as necessary.

    The Course Design and Materials Committee may include parents, but state law provides that parents must make up less than one-half the committee. Members will be appointed by the superintendent or designee.

    Criteria for Selection of Core Instructional Materials

    Core instructional materials will be selected based upon the degree to which they:

    1. Demonstrate likelihood of impact as shown by scientific or evidence-based research;

    2. Enable implementation of the district’s developed curriculum and meet state standards and College Readiness requirements;

    3. Meet the varied needs and abilities of the students served;

    4. Provide clear and appropriate differentiation components;

    5. Where appropriate, present balanced but differing views of issues, controversial or otherwise, in order that students may develop critical analysis and informed decision-making skills;

    6. Demonstrate consideration of appropriate format(s) (including technological, visual, and/or auditory components);

    7. Support an equitable access to learning and learning materials for all students; and

    8. Are free of stereotyping and gender, race, class, and other forms of bias, recognizing that under certain circumstances biased materials may serve as appropriate resources to present contrasting and differing points of view, and biased materials may be employed in order to teach students about bias, stereotyping, and propaganda in historical or contemporary contexts. The Washington Models for the Evaluation of Bias Content in Instructional Materials, published by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) should be consulted in the selection process to further the goal of eliminating content bias: https://www.k12.wa.us/CurriculumInstruct/InstructionalMaterialsReview.aspx.

    Recommendation and Adoption of Core Instructional Materials

    Core material will be reviewed and adopted according to superintendent-established procedures to ensure compliance with the Criteria for Selection of Core Instructional Materials above and by using instructional material evaluation tools listed on the OSPI website: https://www.k12.wa.us/CurriculumInstruct/InstructionalMaterialsReview.aspx

    Based on its evaluation, the CDMC will recommend instructional materials to the school board for adoption. In cases where only a single set of instructional materials is determined by the district to be substantially aligned to state standards, the superintendent or designee will inform stakeholders of the district’s plan to implement the aligned instructional materials and develop a plan to engage the stakeholders in the process.

    All core instructional materials will be approved by the board prior to their use in classrooms.

    Regularly Scheduled OER Core Instructional Material Updates

    Any courses using OER as their core instructional materials may convene a Course Design and Materials Committee (CDMC) that includes a representative group of district teachers of the course, under the guidance of the superintendent or designee, to annually revise and improve the core OER instructional materials. Adaptations will be based on teacher and student suggestions and data from state or district assessments identifying areas of lower student performance. Revised versions of the core instructional materials will be implemented the following school year.

    If the adaptations to the core materials result in significant changes to course objectives or scope, the revised resource will be recommended to the school board for adoption.

    Exceptional Needs or Rapidly Changing Circumstances

    The superintendent or designee may authorize the acquisition of core or alternative core instructional materials to meet exceptional needs or rapidly changing circumstances. However, expanded use of core instructional materials selected for these purposes will require adoption through the formal process.

    Advanced Placement (AP)

    AP courses may have varying course designs as necessitated by their credit transfer requirements. In addition to meeting College Board requirements, these courses must meet district course design requirements, including development of priority learning goals, scope/sequence/pacing guides, differentiation strategies, a formative and summative assessment system, and professional development activities to provide teachers with the knowledge and skills they need to implement the AP courses effectively.

    Field Testing

    The superintendent or designee may consider the use of field testing prior to or as part of the adoption process. Field testing can provide a flexible opportunity to investigate the effectiveness of curricular approaches, instructional materials, and/or assessment resources through careful experimentation for an identified purpose based on student needs. 

    Citizen Access to View Core Materials

    Members of the community are invited to review any core instructional materials in current or proposed use. Such review may be accomplished at the school or in the district office. The review and examination process will be arranged in a way to avoid disrupting the educational program. The review of core materials will be undertaken with the knowledge of district learning objectives in mind. 

    Intervention Instructional Material Selection

    Instructional materials designed to support strategic or intensive intervention for students who are at risk of not meeting established learning standards will be selected through a process established by the superintendent or designee based upon evidence from reputable sources (e.g., National Center on Response to Intervention, Johns Hopkins Best Evidence Encyclopedia, the What Works Clearinghouse).

    Alternative Core Instructional Material Selection

    Alternative core materials designed for specialized course offerings or flexible learning environments will be selected through a process established by the superintendent or designee.

    Supplemental Material Selection

    Supplemental materials designed to be used in conjunction with the core instructional materials for a course will be selected through a process established by the superintendent or designee.

    Temporary Supplemental Material Selection

    Temporary supplemental materials designed to be used in conjunction with the core instructional material for a course will be selected through a process established by the superintendent or designee including prior approval by the building principal. Principals and teachers will follow district procedures in the selection of high quality temporary supplemental materials that align to state learning standards and are appropriate for the instructional program and developmental levels and interests of the students served. Principals and their certificated teachers are expected to thoroughly preview such materials and give careful consideration to the text complexity; developmental levels of the students; appropriateness of language or images; bias against racial, gender, ethnic, or other social groups; and other sensitive issues. Principals and teachers must ensure that temporary supplemental materials do not supplant core instructional materials or alter course pacing in order to guarantee that all students have access to the district-approved core curriculum.

    Showing Visual Media

    1. Teachers must notify principals in advance if they intend to show a curriculum-related visual media clip during instructional time. A “visual media clip” is defined as less than 15 minutes in duration. It can include films, DVDs, taped television shows, internet broadcasts, etc.

    2. Curriculum-related visual media that are longer than 15 minutes may only be shown during instructional time with prior principal permission.

    3. When teachers use visual media to support instruction, they must be actively engaged with their students while the visual media/clip is playing.

    Example: teacher explains how the visual media/clip supports the instructional goal(s) of the lesson and watches with students. They stop periodically to discuss the key elements that enhance student learning.

    Non-Example: teacher is seated at desk, inputting grades to the computer while students are watching a science DVD and taking notes.

    IMPORTANT: Visual media may be used to support teacher instruction. Visual media may not be used to replace teacher instruction while the teacher performs non-instructional tasks during student contact time.

    1. Showing non-curriculum-related visual media is not permitted.

    2. Using visual media for incentives or rewards is not permitted.

    3. Curriculum-related visual media may be shown to students during non-instructional times with prior principal permission (e.g., during lunch or recess).

    Request for Reconsideration Procedure for Instructional Materials

    When a parent/guardian or employee challenges any instructional materials used or restricted from use in the schools, the following steps should be taken:

    1. Concerns should first be discussed with the certificated teacher and/or the school principal. All parties are urged to resolve the concern at this level.

    2. If the concerns cannot be resolved through discussion at the school level, the following steps will be taken and the instructional materials in question will continue to be used until a decision is rendered:

      1. If the instructional material is supplemental or temporary supplemental in nature, at a parent’s written request to the principal, the material may be withdrawn from their student. The principal will facilitate a meeting of the parent(s)/guardian(s) and appropriate school staff. Following the meeting, the principal will respond with a written decision. If warranted by the scope of the supplemental material, an appeal may be submitted to the superintendent or designee requesting review by the Course Design and Materials Committee (CDMC) and a written decision.

      2. If the instructional material is core, alternative core, or intervention material, the parent/guardian or employee may register a request for reconsideration with the superintendent or designee. This request will be forwarded to the Course Design and Materials Committee (CDMC). The CDMC will review the complaint and establish a timely process for public consideration of the complaint, if appropriate. All instructional material reconsideration decisions will be by majority vote of the CDMC and are final. Decisions of the committee will be delivered in writing to the superintendent, complainant, and affected staff within ten (10) school business days.

    Removal of Instructional Materials

    Instructional materials may be removed from use at any time they no longer meet the criteria used for initial selection or when such removal is determined to be in the best interests of the district as determined by the superintendent or designee.

    A.  Core, Alternative Core, and Intervention Instructional Materials

    Core, alternative core, and intervention instructional materials will be removed from use by the building principal when other replacement materials have been adopted or selected through district-approved processes and are available for use.

    B. Supplementary and Temporary Instructional Materials

    Supplementary and temporary instructional materials will be removed from use by the staff member responsible for them, with the advice and consent of their principal.

    C. Obsolete Instructional Materials

    Obsolete and damaged materials no longer found useful may be removed when appropriate. In regard to surplus materials or property under consideration to be sold, notification and disposal will be made according to law and district regulations. Materials remaining after sale date will be disposed of by the most appropriate means available.

    ADOPTED: 09/25/1997
    REVISED: 2/25/99; 11/22/11; 6/23/15; 3/24/16; 3/23/17

2000 Policies