Social Studies Curriculum Revisions


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During the recent spate of posts on this site regarding the New York State Social Studies curriculum revision, some commentators asked whom to contact. The person is charge of this initiative is Dr. Lawrence Paska, Coordinator of Curriculum and Instruction, NYS Education Department, 89 Washington Avenue, Room 318 EB Albany, NY 12234. 518-474-5922. lpaska@mail.nysed,gov

The Education Department is headed by Commissioner of Education John B. King. The Board of Regents oversee the Department and make education policy, including curricula.

There is a “Social Studies Content Advisory Panel” working with Dr. Paska’s office which includes the following:

John Agnello, NYC Department of Education
Carol Berkin, Baruch College and CUNY Graduate Center
Alison Brown, Achievement First
Jerry Evensky, Maxwell School, Syracuse University
Rebecca Feuerbach, Ithaca City School District
William Gaudelli, Teachers College, Columbia University
Steven Goldberg, City School District of New Rochelle
Chris Haertel, Albany City School District
James Harrison, Siena College
Frank Juzwiak, Patchford-Medford School District
Jeffrey Kinkley, St. John’s University
Stephen LaMorte, Rochester City School District
Elaine Lawrence, SUNY Oneonta
Kim O’Neil, Liverpool School District
Timothy Potts, Monticello School District
Walter Robinson, Dunkirk Central School District
Garth Swanson, Genesee Community College

It still isn’t clear how the revision initiative will proceed.

But there is a lot at stake for the future of social studies and history education in New York.

The issues include:

*How prominent will social studies be in the final version of the Common Core standards? (The current “Common Core” puts “history/social studies” under “English language arts.”)

*How prominent will history be in the new social studies curriculum?

*How much and what kind of coverage will be given to New York state history, and in what grades?

*How much and what kind of coverage will be given to New York local/community history, and in what grades?

*Will there be Regents exams in this area? (The exams for Grades 7/8 social studies, which includes U.S. and New York, were discontinued two years ago in a budget reduction).

*What connections will be made with New York’s officially designated local historians and historical societies and museums?

 

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Bruce Dearstyne

About Bruce Dearstyne

Dr. Bruce W. Dearstyne lives in Guilderland. Dearstyne is a former professor at the College of Information Studies, University of Maryland, where he is now an Adjunct Professor. Before joining the Maryland faculty, he held positions at the New York State Archives and the Office of State History. He is the author of The Spirit of New York: Sixteen Events That Changed History, forthcoming from SUNY Press early in 2015. He is also the author of Railroads and Railroad Regulation in New York State, 1900-1913 and joint author of New York: Yesterday and Today. He served as guest editor of a special issue of the journal Public Historian on “Strengthening the Management of State History: Issues, Perspectives, and Insights from New York” (August 2011). He also writes occasional essays on New York State history issues for the “Perspective” section of the Sunday Albany Times Union.

2 thoughts on “Social Studies Curriculum Revisions

  1. ekvmartin

    This is an extremely interesting post. Please keep us updated as you find out more about this advisory panel and what they are working on and when public input will be permitted.

    Reply
  2. ekvmartin

    Is it accurate that this list of people were asked to sign a document stating they would not discuss what they were working on with others and instead would let all information come directly from the state?

    Reply

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