The adoption of new science textbooks may be delayed a year as a budget maneuver.
The $1.4 billion price tag for new science textbooks and other materials has been causing sticker shock among state officials bracing for the upcoming budget shortfall.
So, the State Board of Education on Tuesday must decide whether to push ahead despite the cost or delay the textbooks for at least a year to save the state money in the 2012-13 budget.
The $1.4 billion total would pay for much more than science textbooks, including ongoing contracts for instructional materials and books for new students. But the state at this point has more flexibility on the science textbooks than the other materials.
One option the board will consider is keeping the existing textbooks for a little longer while providing students electronic supplements that would reflect the science curriculum standards approved by the board last year.
Basically, it’s another accounting trick, since changes to the curriculum will require different textbooks. The money will be spent, it’s just a question of how much of it will be spent this biennium, and how much will be put off till next time. Too bad they’re not considering a similar delay for social studies. In fact, as Lisa Falkenberg notes, McLeroy will be doubling down on the social studies madness one last time before he slinks off the stage. As before, TFN will be live-blogging the whole mess when it starts tomorrow. We’ll see how much worse it’s all about to get.
UPDATE: An “indefinite delay” in buying the new science textbooks has been recommended to the Board.