Identifying Which Materials the Selection Committee Will Review: 3 Powerful Strategies

Woman sorting post-it notes with titles of materials to determine the list of materials to give to the selection committee

In 5 Tips for Planning an Effective K-12 Curriculum Review and Adoption Process, we discussed the decisions you need to make when planning an instructional materials adoption process. For an adoption to be successful, the selection committee must have sufficient guidance and time to review materials effectively. With so many materials on the market, narrowing the list of materials for …

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5 Tips for Planning an Effective K-12 Curriculum Review and Adoption Process

Cover page image of whitepaper on selecting high-quality K-12 curricula. The paper is tiled, Guidance for Selecting or Curating High-Quality Instructional Resources.

Over the years, Learning List has assisted hundreds of districts in planning and running K-12 curriculum adoptions. As a result, we have observed many “what to do’s” and “what not to do’s.” One of the critical “to-do’s” is to plan the process. A well-planned, thorough process is far more likely to lead to a successful outcome. Some important decision points …

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Got K-12 Curriculum Chaos? Don’t Despair -Just Audit!

Woman sitting at desk staring at stack of instructional materials stacked on her desk

The end of the school year and the impending ESSER cliff are two forces compelling districts to review their K-12 curriculum materials to determine which instructional resources to keep and which to discard. If you are involved in making those decisions in your district, the first question you are likely asking is, “Which materials are teachers using?” Several companies, including …

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A Radical Rewrite of Texas’ Instructional Materials Laws Threatens to Dismantle the K-12 Market


If you care about instructional materials, you need to know about legislation that is sailing through the Texas legislature: House Bill 1605 (Buckley) and its identical companion Senate Bill 2565 (Creighton). The legislation would implement significant changes in how instructional materials are selected and used in Texas classrooms. Why should you care? California, Texas, New York, and Florida have long been …

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Buying Instructional Materials? How to Avoid Making a (Multi-)Million Dollar Mistake

Caveat Emptor … a Latin phrase meaning, “Buyer Beware.” For centuries buyers have been held to a standard of due diligence; do your homework before you buy or suffer the consequences. Purchasing instructional materials is the single largest annual purchase a school district typically makes. To put it in context: school districts spend more on instructional materials annually than you …

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Will Districts Succumb to State Pressure Over the Adoption/Use of Instructional Materials?

If you have perceived an increase in state control over the adoption of instructional materials, you are not alone. This blog explains the reason for the shift away from districts’ control over the selection and use of instructional materials. In a recent EdWeek article, education leaders who shaped the standards movement argue “that states should be doing more ‘quality control’ when it …

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4 Steps For Overcoming Curriculum Chaos

Curriculum Chaos

Over the last three years, yours, like most districts, likely scrambled to meet students’ needs in lots of new ways. The district may have purchased new materials to support at-home learning. Teachers may have subscribed to online resources individually.  And, since students returned to school, intervention, and tutoring resources have likely been purchased.

When you analyze the current list of materials in your district, do you have an abundance of instructional materials? If so, are all being utilized, and are they meeting the needs of your students and educators?

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When Selecting K-12 Supplemental Materials, Does the Alignment % Matter?

Image of a supplemental material for mathematics

When purchasing supplemental materials, how much weight should you give to the alignment percentage? In this blog, we explore the differences between comprehensive and supplemental materials when it comes to assessing alignment. Educators in every district are working hard this year to close students’ Covid-19-related learning gaps. Consequently, many campuses and districts are selecting supplemental materials. This blog discusses important differences between supplemental and …

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K-12 Curriculum Reviews: What Sets Learning List Apart?

Learning List's Curriculum Review Service 10-Year Anniversary Image with gold baloons

Does the following scenario sound familiar? The state’s math standards recently changed, and your district purchased new instructional materials for mathematics. Teachers use the materials for a few months, but when students struggle to master the content, the teachers grow skeptical about the material’s quality. Increasingly, they turn to lesson resources they have developed themselves or borrowed from their colleagues. …

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Selecting Supplemental Materials? Here’s a Process to Help You Pick the Best Materials for Your Students

Supplemental materials on a laptop

In the first two blogs in this series, we offered guidance for planning an instructional materials adoption and customizing a rubric to reflect your district’s priorities. Generally, districts would use that information when selecting core materials. Supplemental materials are most commonly selected at the campus level, and campus leaders typically rely on word of mouth (Wang et. al., 2019) when …

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