Starting for the 2023-24 school year, the NCESD STEM Materials Cooperative will implement several changes to better meet the needs of the districts it serves. Please review the content on this page to best prepare for the changes. Use the tabs above to learn more about specific changes to Elementary School curriculum and Middle School curriculum.

If you have any questions, please contact our team as soon as possible so we can assist you.

Cari Haug | Regional Science Coordinator |
Jane Schuyleman | Science Program Administrative Assistant |

Things to keep in mind…

** Nothing is changing for the 2022-23 school year for anyone in the STEM Materials Cooperative. **

Elementary School Curriculum

  • Elementary School Smithsonian for the Classroom units will continue to be used for K-5 classrooms during the 2023-24 school year.

Middle School Curriculum

  • Smithsonian STCMS units will be liquidated in June/July 2023.

  • Cooperative members will receive the new OpenSciEd units in time for the 2023-24 school year.

High School Curriculum

  • OpenSciEd is in development for its high school curriculum with a pilot program taking place during the 2022-23 school year.

Ready to start preparing for the Middle School curriculum switch in 2023-24?

OpenSciEd units are available to purchase now and trainings through ESSER funding will be available this summer and include free kits and travel. Trainings are FREE and include travel and lodging reimbursements, stipend, additional training for future facilitators, free kit materials for attending

  • Summer Institute on 6.1, 7.1, 8.1 July 26 – 28 (Vancouver)
  • Summer Institute on 6.2, 7.2 and 8.2 August 9-11 (Wenatchee)

Starting for the 2023-24 school year, the NCESD STEM Materials Cooperative will continue to supply district members with Smithsonian Science for the Classroom units for ALL GRADES K-5.

However, new in the 2023-24 school year, there will be FOUR (4) ROTATIONS instead of three (3) rotations throughout the year.

  • Each district will receive ONE (1) unit per rotation; in the past, districts would receive two (2) units during one of the rotations

  • Kindergarten will not receive units in the fall to allow them to focus on beginning of the year priorities.

  • Draft of the 2023-24 rotation scheduled (not finalized)

    • August – October
    • November – December/January
    • January – March
    • March – June

Starting for the 2023-24 school year, the NCESD STEM Materials Cooperative will supply OpenSciEd units to ALL GRADES 6-8. This replaces the Smithsonian STCMS units for middle school classrooms.

What will it look like?

  • Districts will purchase their own set of materials and store them at their district. Each kit serves 160 students (5 classes of 32 students).

  • Refurbishment is available on an annual basis through NCESD

    • Refurbishment will likely look like a district responding to a KBE sent by the ESD in the spring indicating the need for a new consumable supply kit.
    • Districts will have the flexibility to order those supplies when needed. For example, some of our smaller districts may not need supplies shipped to them every year since the kits serve up to 160 students.
    • Kits will not be shipped back and forth between the ESD and the district like they are with Smithsonian kits. A box of new supplies will be shipped directly to the district upon request and the purchase will be indicated on the KBE.
  • There are many benefits to being a part of the Cooperative and participating in the new structure.

    • Receive bulk/discount pricing
    • Free training
    • PLC opportunities for support
    • Worry free refurbishment
    • And more!

To learn more please contact Jane Schuyleman (NCESD) at or Jeff Frates (Carolina Science) at