Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Discovery Science coming to CT Middle Schools

TO: Superintendents of Schools

FROM: Mark K. McQuillan, Commissioner of Education

DATE: December 8, 2008

SUBJECT:Computer-Based Science Resources for Middle Grades

I am excited to announce a new resource that will soon be available to all middle grades (Grades 6-8) in Connecticut. Connecticut has acquired a statewide license to Discovery Education Science—an award winning standards-based multimedia resource that powers any middle-school science curricula with virtual labs, simulations, interactive videos, reading passages and more, coupled with a real-time assessment component that measures students’ progress. This is a four-year license and is provided by the Connecticut Education Network (CEN) through the Commission for Educational Technology (CET) at no cost to school districts.

Organized around an inquiry framework and covering physical, earth and space, and life sciences, Discovery Education Science is designed to engage students, encourage exploration, stimulate critical thinking and deepen understanding of science.

Within the next few weeks, you will be contacted by a representative from Discovery Education who will provide you with information on how to provide all of your Grades 6-8 students and their science teachers with access to these wonderful resources. Professional development will also be available, both online and through the regional educational service centers (RESCs), so that all teachers understand how to make full use of the Discovery Education Science materials to enhance their curricula.

In these difficult fiscal times, it is critical that we continue to enhance the educational experiences of our students and help them develop solid skills in core content areas like science, as well as in the use of technology and the development of 21st century skills. I am so pleased that we are able to advance each of these areas with the addition of Discovery Education Science.

You can find out more about Discovery Education Science by visiting their Web site If you have any questions about this initiative, you may contact Karen Kaplan, educational technology consultant, at karen.kaplan@ct.gov or 860-713-6781.