Without careful and continuing attention to implementation, planned changes in curriculum and instruction rarely succeed as intended. How change is put into practice, to a large extent, determines how well it fares.

Implementation refers to what actually happens in practice as compared to what was supposed to happen. Curriculum implementation includes the provision of organized assistance to staff in order to ensure that the newly developed curriculum and the most powerful instructional strategies are actually delivered at the classroom level. There are two components of any implementation effort that must be present to guarantee the planned changes in curriculum and instruction succeed as intended:

  • Understanding the conceptual framework of the content/discipline being implemented; and,
  • Organized assistance to understand the theory, observe exemplary demonstrations, have opportunities to practice, and receive coaching and feedback focused on the most powerful instructional strategies to deliver the content at the classroom level.

The superintendent is responsible for curriculum implementation and for determining the most effective way of providing organized assistance and monitoring the level of implementation. A curriculum framework will describe the processes and procedures that will be followed to assist all staff in developing the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully implement the developed curriculum in each content area. This framework will, at a minimum, describe the processes and procedures for the following curriculum implementation activities to:

  • Study and identify the best instructional practices and materials to deliver the content;
  • Describe procedures for the purchase of instructional materials and resources (See Policy 605.1);
  • Identify/develop exemplars that demonstrate the learning behaviors, teaching, and learning environment to deliver the content;
  • Study the current status of instruction in the content area (how teachers are teaching);
  • Compare the desired and present delivery system, identify differences (gap analysis), and develop a plan for addressing the differences;
  • Organize staff into collaborative study teams to support their learning and implementation efforts (address the gaps);
  • Provide ongoing professional development related to instructional strategies and materials that focuses on theory, demonstration, practice and feedback;
  • Regularly monitor and assess the level of implementation;
  • Communicate with internal and external publics regarding curriculum implementation;
  • Involve staff, parents, students, and community members in curriculum implementation decisions.

It is the responsibility of the superintendent to keep the board apprised of curriculum implementation activities, progress of each content area related to curriculum implementation activities, and to develop administrative regulations for curriculum implementation including recommendations to the board.


Note: This is a mandatory policy but the content is discretionary to the extent somewhere in board policy the board describes its process for establishing content standards, benchmarks, performance levels, and annual improvement goals aligned with needs assessment information. The bulleted items are suggestions for content of this policy. The italicized items are not mandatory functions but are implied from the mandates. Boards, in conjunction with their administrators, should review their curriculum evaluation process and incorporate it into this policy - striking what doesn't apply and adding what does. For more detailed discussion of this issue, see IASB's Policy Primer, Vol. 13 #1- May 15, 2000.


Legal Reference:

20 U.S.C. § 1232h.

34 C.F.R. pt. 98.

Iowa Code §§ 216.9256.7279.8280.3-.14.

281 I.A.C. 12.8(1)(c)(1).

Cross Reference:

101 Educational Philosophy of the School District

103 Long-Range Needs Assessment

505 Student Scholastic Achievement

602 Curriculum Development

603 Instructional Curriculum

Approved     9/18/97           Reviewed   1/19/22            Revised