CSCOPE: a tool for schools
The Orangefield School District recently announced they would be using CSCOPE in their curriculum, but this is not new to other school district in the area who have been using it for a while.
CSCOPE, developed by the Texas Education Service Center Curriculum Collaborative and sold by Texas Regional Education Service Centers, is the curriculum management tool of choice for 875 school districts, charter schools, and private schools in Texas.
CSCOPE was developed by Texas teachers; for Texas schools; to benefit Texas students. In no way is it based on, or affiliated with, the Common Core curriculum, a set of national standards used in other states. CSCOPE is only available to schools in Texas. The TESCCC does not provide curriculum management services to any other state. The governing board and development team take pride in creating a curriculum that is aligned to Texas standards and focused on improving education in Texas.
The program is aligned with the state standards adopted by the Texas State Board of Education and assist educators in covering all standards such as reading, math, science and social studies within the academic year. The state of Texas has requirements for each grade level in the core classes in order to be promoted to the next grade level and ultimately graduate.
According to Dr. Danny Lovett, Director of Region V, it is mostly smaller districts who use CSCOPE. The larger “mega” districts have a team which designs the plans for teachers to follow.
CSCOPE is completely “customizable” at the district, campus, and teacher level to meet the unique needs of students and communities.
In the spring of 2009, educators with the Bridge City school district began talking about CSCOPE. They decided to go with CSCOPE at the start of the 2010 school year. Since then, they have been very happy with the plan. Before implementing CSCOPE, the district curriculum director met with a team of teachers from each campus and they formulated a scope and sequence plan.
“It makes a teacher’s life better,” said Mike King, Bridge City superintendent. ‘We have worked to make it not something we require.”
Mannino added the district could create their own plan, or just go with CSCOPE.
CSCOPE provides a tool for teachers to plan their lessons so they can ensure they are meeting the state’s requirements for each grade level.
The Little Cypress-Mauriceville CISD started using the program the 2012-13 school year. But, began training their teachers a year before implementing the plan.
Both school districts don’t require teachers to follow CSCOPE to the letter, but allow them to use the program as a baseline in their classrooms.
“We just want teachers to have engaging lessons,” said Gina Mannino,BCISD assistant superintendent.
Bridge City teachers on each grade level work together to formulate a plan on what to teach their students in addition to using CSCOPE. Although, each teacher has the option to deviate from the plan since each classroom is different and has various needs.
The administration also wants them to be organized in their lessons to meet the state requirements. Teachers have to option to deviate from the program during certain lessons, but many fall back on the program to ensure the needs are being met.
“The misconception about CSCOPE is that teachers were forced to teach the lessons,” Lovett said. “It was never intended to be scripts, but instead they are samples.”
The CSCOPE system’s unique and innovative design allows educators to modify or adapt CSCOPE content, create their own content, and incorporate district-approved resources, such as textbooks. This allows the instructor to maintain their authority in directing the learning environment of the classroom and individualizes a student’s learning.
CSCOPE is designed to serve as a teacher resource and is not intended to be accessed by students. Any content in the CSCOPE system is only directly accessible to teachers and designated district personnel. However, a teacher at their discretion may choose to share certain content with students. Parents may access CSCOPE content by contacting their child’s teacher or school district.
If the state should revise the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills the state provides, then CSCOPE will adapt to the sequences since it is considered a “living” document.
For more information, there will be an informational meeting from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. May 28th at the Little Cypress-Mauriceville High School auditorium.