Carolina Biological Supply Company Earned a Prestigious Badge of Honor from WestEd for its High School Science Labs

Carolina first company to earn top Next Generation Science Standards® product design honor

BURLINGTON, NC, Jan. 25, 2022 – Leading school science supplier Carolina Biological announced that its high school science lab kits won a top national award. Presented by WestEd, Carolina Biological is the first and only for-profit organization to earn the NGSS Design Badge, which is awarded to science units designed for the Next Generation Science Standards® (NGSS). To qualify, the units have earned the highest rating on the Educators Evaluating the Quality of Instructional Products Rubric for Science (EQuIP) on a review conducted by NextGenScience. WestEd’s mission is to transform science teaching, learning, and leadership through equitable and evidence-based approaches to reviewing classroom instructional materials, designing professional learning, and developing system strategies. With many science instructional materials claiming to be aligned to the NGSS, WestEd provides quality control through a rigorous review process that helps educators make smart decisions about which instructional materials to use for their science classes. As of November, only about 4% of all units reviewed had been awarded the prestigious NGSS Design Badge.

The WestEd review team awarded the NGSS Carolina Kit 3D® investigation, Matter Cycling and Energy Transfer in Lake Ecosystems, a perfect 9 out of 9 score with an overall rating of E (Extensive). The investigation is one kit within an extensive line of three-dimensional lab kits available for biology, chemistry, physics and earth and space science instruction. Evaluation of this life science investigation took place over a two-year period with continuous improvements made by the Carolina curriculum development team. Carolina is the only for-profit company to earn a badge from WestEd/Achieve for its NGSS 3D instructional materials, that until now had only approved products from not-for-profit organizations.         

“Carolina developers became better at developing high-quality instructional materials from participating in the review process and the feedback we received from the NextGenScience Peer Review Panel,” said Mark W. Meszaros, Ph.D., Vice President and Core Products Management & Innovation, at Carolina Biological Supply Company.

 Carolina Kits 3D investigations are built by subject matter experts at Carolina from the ground up to engage students in scientific and engineering practices while applying core ideas and crosscutting concepts—experiences that are key to thriving with the NGSS and phenomena-based learning. The investigations help educators build students’ curiosity and accelerate learning using rigorous hands-on labs in-class, with hybrid instruction or with students at home. Additionally, it is adaptable for both the three- and four-course model of science instruction. The Carolina Kits 3D program includes comprehensive manuals, pre-lab activities, assessments, access to the digital platform Carolina Science Online, in addition to a vast array of hands-on materials for each student.  The digital resources include the complete teacher’s manual, student guides, and supplementary resources for in-class or remote instruction.

“Carolina is excited and pleased to have earned the NGSS Design Badge,” said Meszaros. “Our goal is to be the Best at NGSS and help teachers transition to NGSS instruction. This badge is external recognition that we are making progress.”

In April 2020, NextGenScience launched at WestEd to support educators with the implementation of rigorous science standards across the nation. NextGenScience brings together expertise in classroom teaching, learning design, science leadership, and policy analysis. Its team was formerly part of Achieve — the nonprofit organization that coordinated the development of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in 2013 and led efforts to improve the design, selection, and implementation of high-quality science curricula and assessments.

The NGSS Design Badge provides assurance that a unit, whether free or purchased from a publisher, is designed for the NGSS. As a digital badge with embedded, detailed feedback about the materials, the evidence for why the badge was awarded follows the badge wherever it goes. It’s critical that educators know not only that the materials are designed for today’s science standards, but also that evidence supports this claim. The badge also gives publishers and developers a way to demonstrate to educators and science leaders that their materials are high quality and designed for the NGSS.

To discuss the program with a subject matter expert at Carolina, please call (800) 334-5551, or e-mail

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Media Contact:
Julie Gates for Carolina Biological Supply Company
562-429-5972 or