Skip to main content
Full Menu

Curriculum Guidance for the 2020-21 School Year

The UFT has collaborated with the Department of Education and the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators, the principals’ union, to develop a plan to help educators successfully design instruction for the 2020–21 school year.

There are three important components:

1. Access to digital curricula aligned with the state standards.

In January of 2020, the UFT led the way on a joint venture to assess the diverse curricula being used in our city’s schools with the aim of developing a set of core curricula aligned to the Next Generation Learning Standards. Our task changed when the pandemic broke. Teachers needed access to curricula that is not only standards-based but available digitally.

The DOE, with the help of the UFT Teacher Center, has compiled a menu of available digital curricula for core subject areas, including some of the city’s most used math, science and social studies curricula. Schools may also choose to opt into a digital K-12 ELA curriculum free of charge.

The features of this new digital curricula for teachers:

· Includes a scope and sequence
· Outlines clearly what students should know and be able to do
· Is aligned with state standards
· Includes resources and materials that can be used in person and remotely.

Schools continue to have the option to select or design their own curricula if they prefer. See the DOE's curricula menu

2. A set of priority standards to help educators make instructional decisions.

We understand that adherence to traditional instructional pacing will be impossible this year. Teachers have told us that they need to be able to address students’ trauma and unfinished learning from the spring.

The UFT, the DOE and the principals’ union have identified a set of citywide priority learning standards for ELA and math. Although no state standards have been eliminated, concentrating on these priority standards will help teachers focus on the most essential skills and knowledge their students need.

The UFT has requested that the DOE consider expanding the priority learning standards to cover science and social studies as well. See the priority learning standards

3. Resources to support blended and remote teacher teams in shared planning and instruction.

Teachers made an extraordinary effort to pivot to remote work in the spring, but this fall we face the new challenge of collaborating to deliver consistent instruction both in person and remotely. To help teacher teams plan together, identify gaps in their curricula and find resources for both types of instruction, the UFT, the DOE and the principals’ union have created sets of learning maps targeted at specific grades and subjects. See the learning maps

Check out our curriculum FAQs for more details about these and other instructional issues.