Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Philly Inquirer reports on
Singapore Math

From the end of the article:

Opinions vary on how to best tackle the international competitiveness problem. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics hopes to work with states to narrow and focus what they teach. Schmidt advocates a single national math curriculum.

"What Singapore has," he said, "is a coherent, focused, rigorous set of standards, and that's the competition our kids are facing."

Check it out here:


Anonymous said...

WTM could easily follow Schmidt's lead and support a standard at least as good Singapore. Its an excellent solution to a growing problem.

Anonymous said...

I've been reading various accounts of the TIMSS report and the focus by the media is more to do with balance than with accuracy. To say anything positive about the US results is detrimental to the real problem that I observe in classrooms.

Knowledge requires more than exposure to content. Students need to be fluent and versed in deductive and inductive logic. Based on our students' results, the reform math programs make absolutely no sense, especially when teachers have to make their own curriculum.

My ninth and tenth graders are currently learning multiplication, fractions, and decimals...and we are doing fine without textbooks. Screw the district's adoption.

Anonymous said...

Nationally, about 70 percent of U.S. students graduate on time with a regular diploma and about 1.2 million students drop out annually.

“When more than 1 million students a year drop out of high school, it's more than a problem, it's a catastrophe,” said former Secretary of State Colin Powell, founding chair of the alliance.

Here's appendix A from OSPI's website reporting on 2007 dropout rates.

Putting the national statistics into perspective (if you can trust the 'glowing' stats) of school districts, there are almost a million students enrolled in Washington state.

One way to estimate turnovers is to look at the female/male ratios of alternative schools. A high number indicates a good chance of a high turnover of students and consequently much lower graduation rates than are being reported.