Introduction

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Have you ever noticed how pervasive safety is in our lives? We have rules, guidelines, and appropriate equipment for just about everything we do, from driving to cooking, from work to sports. Safety is a top priority so that the quality of life we experience is rich as well as deep with as few negative repurcussions as possible.

Safety is everyone's responsibility. A school district's administrators, whether on the campus or in the district's central offices, have a crucial role in assuring that students and teachers work and learn in an environment that is safe. See TEA Texas Safety Standards Introduction for more on the administrators' responsibibilities. As educators, we share the duty and responsibility to guard our safety and the safety of our students by providing training, supervision, and a safe environment in which to learn science.

The training you are about to begin is a self-paced course. It includes information about your legal and classroom responsibilities, information about how to operate and maintain lab safety equipment, and web links and documents for you to access and utilize during this training and throughout the school year.

Before you begin the course, open the Texas Education Agency Texas Safety Standards.pdf file. Save it to your desktop or in your documents so you can reference it throughout the course and during the year. Click Science to gain access to other resources and reference documents provided by the Texas Education Agency.

** "TEA Science Safety Training for Middle School" online course is intended as an
introduction to science safety and is not meant to take the place of a complete safety training.**

Course Objectives

learn
By the end of the course, participants should be able to:

  • prepare, model, and instruct proper safety procedures and practices for students;
  • plan, implement, and actively supervise appropriate science activities;
  • monitor/maintain safety equipment, laboratory space, materials, and chemicals; and
  • support science teachers and students in maintaining a safe learning environment.

Organizations such as the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) and the National Science Education Leadership Association (NSELA) generate position statements on topics such as science inquiry, lab investigations, and safety. Click Safety and School Science Instruction to read the Position Statement on the NSTA website.

Additional position statements can be located in Appendix B of the Texas Education Agency Texas Safety Standards.pdf document.