Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Paramount Duty = Dump Reform Math

It is the paramount duty of the state to provide for the education of all children residing within its borders.

Each school board of directors has the final responsibility to set policies ensuring quality in the content and extent of its educational program. The program must provide students with the opportunity to achieve those skills generally recognized as requisite to learning.

This has not happened in Seattle math.

Most achievement Gaps have expanded and remain unaddressed. On May 6th two school directors who voted for the discriminatory math materials said there was a shortage of valid research. While this statement may be generally true in many situations it is NOT true for Seattle’s math adoptions.

NMAP made it very clear what needs to happen for struggling math students: Explicit Instruction.

Seattle socially promotes students rather than educating them. The directors never demanded the administration follow existing policies that required effective interventions for struggling students. For years Seattle has had no defined necessary math skills.

May 30, 2007 abundant data revealed Everyday Math as a failing program in Denver and by a multiplicity of other measures unsuitable for use in Seattle, but Everyday was adopted anyway. A year later achievement Gaps among Black, Hispanic, Asian, American Indian, Low Income, and Limited English students expanded.

May 6, 2009 by a 4-3 vote another disastrous exploratory math adoption was made; this time at the high school level. The inquiry/exploratory math plan was expanded and board sanctioned to: “blunder on”.

The NMAP report found that “explicit instruction with students who have mathematical difficulties has shown consistently positive effects on performance with word problems and computation.”

Unfortunately typical Seattle school decision-making prevailed: the discriminatory experimental math program was chosen instead of the consistently positive effects of “Explicit Instruction”.

Laws assure the orderly functioning of society. Hopefully the Superior Court will dispense some justice and stop any use of this discriminatory and unsound high school math text series.

Now is the time to educate mathematically struggling students. After more than a decade “The Board” needs to intelligently apply the relevant data and arrive at a solution for struggling students. “The Board” must fulfill their constitutionally mandated responsibilities to all children by providing students the opportunity to achieve those skills, which are generally recognized as requisite to learning.

The board could begin by dumping “Reform Math”


Anonymous said...

I suggest you read a research based book by Jo Boaler "What's Math Got to Do with It" that completely contradicts your argument. It was an extensive study, based on years of research, and in fact shows that struggling learners as well as learners in general, benefit from a conceptual, hands-on, application based approach to learning mathematics.

An alarming look at whatas wrong with math education in the United States, and what we can do to change it The United States is rapidly falling behind the rest of the developed world in terms of math education, and the future of our economy depends on the quality of teaching that our children receive today. A recent assessment of mathematics performance around the... More world ranked the U.S. twenty-eighth out of forty countries in the study. When the level of spending on education was taken into account, we sank to the very bottom of the list. According to Jo Boaler, a professor of mathematics education at Stanford University, statistics like these are all too commonawe have reached the point of crisis, and a new course of action is crucial. In this straightforward and inspiring book, Boaler outlines the nature of the math crisis by following the progress of students in middle and high schools over a number of years, observing which teaching methods are exciting students and getting results. Based on her research, she presents concrete solutions that will help reverse the trend, including classroom approaches, essential strategies for students, advice for parents on how to help children enjoy mathematics, and ways to work with teachers in schools. "Whatas Math Got To Do With It?" is an indispensable book for all parents and educators and anyone concerned about the mathematical and scientific future of our society.

Anonymous said...

We've been through this already with Jo Boaler. Surveys do not constitute research. No matter how much gloss gets used - its still menusha. We're talking urban classrooms with real kids, not college students.

"As is the case with much education research of this nature, Prof. Boaler has
refused to divulge the identities of the schools to qualified researchers. Consequently,
it would normally be impossible to independently check her work. However, in this
case, the names of the schools were determined and a close examination of the actual
outcomes in these schools shows that Prof. Boaler’s claims are grossly exaggerated
and do not translate into success for her treatment students."

If mathematically sane has another flea circus, we're all ears.

Washington math reform needs brain surgery.

dan dempsey said...

Boaler is no longer at Stanford. Not only do her statements contradict my arguments they contradict reality, which happens when faking the data.

I would refer everyone to the NMAP and its strong recommendation for "Explicit Instruction" and the SPS math data over the last decade, especially the results at Cleveland HS WASL Spring 2007 and Spring 2008.

Yes Boaler shows that "struggling learners as well as learners in general, benefit from a conceptual, hands-on, application based approach to learning mathematics." Because she used a combination of faking and misinterpreting the data in her "Railside Study".

Just another contribution to 16,000 worthless studies that NMAP looked at.

If anyone actually believes this fakery, please look here and respond:

Another blog posting of interest is: