Vertical Alignment: Ensuring Opportunity to Learn in a Standards-Based System. Issue BriefReportar como inadecuado

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In response to requirements in the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), state policymakers have made concerted efforts to align state standards with state accountability assessments. When strongly aligned and articulated, state standards and assessments can provide a clear and coherent set of expectations for students and educators. How do districts ensure that what is taught and tested in classrooms aligns with the state standards and assessment? One approach is through vertical alignment of the district's written curriculum with state standards and assessments. Vertical alignment articulates the logical, consistent order for teaching the standards-based content in a subject area from one grade level or course to the next. There are different approaches to undertaking vertical curriculum alignment in a district. Regardless of the approach taken, districts will most likely face similar implementation issues. This brief explores some of the issues that districts may face when implementing vertical alignment of the written curriculum across grade levels. It is organized as follows: (1) Brief overview of vertical curriculum alignment; (2) Common issues that successful districts have addressed when implementing vertical alignment as part of districtwide curriculum development; and (3) Vignettes that highlight selected aspects of vertical alignment activities.

Descriptors: Federal Legislation, State Standards, Articulation (Education), Alignment (Education), Accountability, Barriers, Performance Factors, Educational Opportunities, Curriculum Implementation, Vignettes, Educational Practices, Educational Strategies

Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement. 1100 17th Street NW Suite 500, Washington, DC 20035. Tel: 877-277-2744; Web site:

Autor: Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement


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