New Jersey Department of Education

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2020 New Jersey Student Learning Standards (NJSLS)

The New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE) supports schools, educators and districts to ensure all of New Jersey’s 1.4 million students have equitable access to high-quality education and achieve academic excellence. To be prepared for postsecondary success, students must become effective thinkers, problem solvers and communicators, and have the skills needed for high-skilled, high-demand jobs. The NJDOE’s standard review and revision process (N.J.A.C. 6A:8-2.1) provides us with an opportunity to ensure our standards are rigorous and relevant.

On June 3, 2020, the State Board of Education adopted the 2020 NJSLS in the following content areas:

These standards truly represent a foundation from which districts will build coherent curriculum and instruction that prepares each New Jersey student with the knowledge and skills to succeed in our rapidly changing world. They will put New Jersey again at the forefront of national education by including the following:

  • Climate Change across all content areas, leveraging the passion students have shown for this critical issue and providing them opportunities to develop a deep understanding of the science behind the changes and to explore the solutions our world desperately needs;
  • Computer programming in all grade bands K-12, ensuring all students receive a 22nd century education in the critical computational thinking skills that are the underpinning of so much of our work and so many of our transactions; and
  • National standards for science and visual and performing arts, ensuring access to, and opportunity in, science and the arts, for every New Jersey public student.

The New Jersey Student Learning Standards in English Language Arts and Mathematics were adopted by the New Jersey State Board of Education in May 2016 and are not currently under review. English Language Arts Instructional Units and Mathematics Instructional Units were created in collaboration with educator teams to assist districts in creating standards-based curriculum and assessment.

Curriculum Implementation Schedule

The NJDOE has heard from stakeholders in all 21 counties that the disruptions due to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency have made it difficult to engage in curriculum writing processes this year as planned. Therefore, to provide relief to districts and to allow districts to focus their efforts and resources on ensuring safe and healthy school environments and providing high-quality instruction in a variety of learning environments, adjustments have been made to the original 2020 NJSLS curriculum implementation schedule.

The NJDOE will provide professional learning, resources, and technical assistance for districts as they prepare to implement the 2020 NJSLS. Districts are required to adopt curricula based on the 2020 NJSLS according to the following implementation schedule:



The NJDOE appreciates the great strides many districts have made so far in aligning curricula and instruction to the revised standards and encourages districts to proceed with curricula planning. Districts undergoing the New Jersey Quality Single Accountability Continuum (NJQSAC) review process:

  • In school year 2021-2022, would be considered compliant using district board adopted curricula aligned to the 2014 or 2020 NJSLS.
  • In school year 2022-2023, would be considered compliant using district board adopted curricula aligned to the 2020 NJSLS.

Educator Review Teams

The NJDOE would like to express its appreciation to the 130 educators from public (including charters) and non-public elementary, middle, and high schools, higher education, parents, and representatives from non-profit organizations, business, the military, and health fields from across New Jersey who shared their time and expertise as members of the standards review teams in each of the seven content areas, as well as the members of the public that provided feedback during the public review period.