Next Generation Science Standards


Student with seabirds

The OAL ACT submitted comments on the draft framework and standards for the nation-wide Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) to ACHIEVE, the organization managing the revision process.  California, Oregon and Washington were among the 26 lead states officially selected to assist in the development of the NGSS.  The NGSS were finalized in April 2013.


Our comments were in support of the Centers for Ocean Sciences Excellence (COSEE)/National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) Critical Stakeholder Group.  These comments were aimed at including accurate information about ocean ecosystems and marine phyla in K-12 science education standards, with an eye towards achieving the critical goal of advancing ocean literacy and promoting accurate and relevant science education.  The final standards include some references to ocean science; an ocean literacy guide from the Ocean Literacy Network links more comprehensive ocean concepts to the NGSS.  It can be downloaded at


Image Courtesy of the California Coastal Commission
Relating ocean science concepts to the NGSS is of great economic, social and scientific importance to all of us. The future of our nation and our environment depend on the next generation gaining a broad, scientific understanding of the ocean, especially its influences on the economy, climate, biodiversity, our food sources, and to the overall quality of our lives.  The next generation will need to be ocean literate if they are to pursue the academic and career paths, make informed consumption choices, understand the complex issues surrounding our use of ocean resources, and practice the civic engagement necessary to confront the environmental challenges of the 21st century.  Improving this understanding is also a critical step toward developing research-based, sustainable and balanced ocean policies.


Next Generation Science Standards: