Selection and Use of Instructional Resources/Materials
In Kentucky, the Department of Education is responsible for the development of standards, and state law assigns districts the authority to design the local curriculum based on language found in Kentucky Revised Statute (KRS) 160.345. Upon the passage of Senate Bill (SB) 1 (2022), the authority to determine instructional materials was transferred from the school-based decision making (SBDM) council to the local superintendent. Specifically, per KRS 160.345, Section 2(g), “the local superintendent shall determine which curriculum, textbooks, instructional materials, and student support services shall be provided in the school after consulting with the local board of education, the school principal, and the school council and after a reasonable review and response period for stakeholders in accordance with local board of education policy."
Kentucky's Model Curriculum Framework (MCF) assists districts and schools in the development and/or revision of curricula, as well as accompanying assessments and professional learning. The MCF serves as a guide to ensure that decisions are based on Kentucky's expectations for effective teaching and learning and includes tools, strategies, and suggested resources for making informed and thoughtful decisions.
High-Quality Instructional Resources
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) defines High-Quality Instructional Resources (HQIRs) as materials that are:
• Aligned with the Kentucky Academic Standards (KAS);
• Research-based and/or externally validated;
• Comprehensive to include engaging texts (books, multimedia, etc.), tasks and assessments;
• Based on fostering vibrant student learning experiences;
• Culturally relevant, free from bias; and
• Accessible for all students.
High-quality instructional resources (HQIRs) are a means by which local curriculum aligned with the Kentucky Academic Standards (KAS) becomes an actionable foundation for districts and schools to equitably foster vibrant student learning experiences. A local curriculum anchored in a HQIR supports the learning goals, outcomes and core competencies students must demonstrate to reach the grade-level expectations within the KAS. It also provides teachers with an array of pedagogical supports to help meet the needs of diverse learners.
The process of identifying, evaluating and selecting a primary HQIR involves multiple steps to ensure decision-makers select resources that will serve local priorities and meet the needs of all learners as articulated in an instructional vision. This work may be completed by the district curriculum team or delegated to a sub-committee formed to undertake this task. The Curriculum Development Process lays out the process for selecting HQIRs and also contains tools to support districts in the work.
Schools and districts may wish to use the Sample Textbook Purchasing Plan to assist in the development of a K-8 purchasing plan.
HQIR Adoption Support Webinar Recording and PowerPoint Now Available
Per amendments to KRS 158.305 as part of Senate Bill 156 (2023), by July 1, 2024, “each superintendent … shall adopt a common comprehensive reading program that is determined by the department to be reliable, valid and aligned to reading and writing standards …for kindergarten through grade three (3) for all schools or a subset of schools, with consultation of all affected elementary school councils.”
To assist districts in effectively selecting an approved Tier 1 comprehensive reading program so that the resource adopted ultimately leads to high-quality instruction and improved student outcomes, the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) offered a one-hour High-Quality Adoption Support webinar on Monday, Nov. 20, a recording of which is now available along with the accompanying PowerPoint.
The webinar highlighted key tools to support local adoption of a high-quality instruction resource (HQIR) including:
Developing an instructional vision to help drive the selection process;
Utilizing a four-step process to support identifying, evaluating and selecting an HQIR;
Providing an overview of how to navigate EdReports; and
Intentionally engaging stakeholders throughout the process.
2023 HQIR Coordinator Convening
For more information about why HQIRs matter, the relationship between Read to Succeed (SB 9, 2022) and HQIRs, and the HQIR voluntary survey and local HQIR Dashboard, please view the recording of the 2023 HQIR Coordinator Convening.
Digital Learning Guidelines
Furthermore, the KDE Digital Learning Team designed the Kentucky Digital Learning Guidelines as guidance for schools, districts, and digital providers when selecting or creating developmentally appropriate digital learning resources for instruction, as well as online and blended learning courses in Kentucky schools.
Digital learning resources, as well as online and digital learning courses used in Kentucky, must align explicitly to the Kentucky Academic Standards appropriate for each course, be endorsed by a highly qualified content teacher, and follow established Kentucky statutes and regulations for selection and purchase as specified in KRS 156.395-476 and 704 KAR 3:455.
* Basal: one that serves as the primary means of instruction in a content area for a grade level or course.