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Any project intending to write education standards for national dissemination and implementation is immediately confronted with the fact that education is a state function, and that the fifty states, plus Puerto Rico, each have their own ideas about what should be taught to their children. Education, unlike many professions, is a highly political act: parents and guardians are concerned about what their children are taught; and various stakeholders have their own ideas about what constitutes a good education. Whether or not they are directly engaged in setting standards, they want to know why a particular set of standards has been selected by those entrusted with their children. Similarly, regulatory agencies and educational institutions must understand why a particular set of standards has been chosen by the science education community to underlie the preparation of science teachers.