Thursday, October 22, 2009
What's Really The Problem?
Odd conversation the other day. I was doing the Daisy girl scout thing (because myself and 10 other parents seem to do everything in this town) and my fellow leaders were discussing the state's new must pass algebra test. No pass= no diploma. It seems that the failure rate is huge. I hadn't paid much attention because 1) my kids got algebra and 2) my oldest two got grandfathered in. My now 8th grader will take it but he's a math whiz. Anyway, much complaining about the test ensued, which may be valid, but my thought was what about the teaching. Surely there must be something wrong with math education if that many kids are failing. And not just algebra but way back in grade school. I am familiar with our high school's plan to fix the problem. All the honor society kids are required to do peer tutoring. You can read that as my kids. Yes, a giant unpaid labor force. So which is it the test, the teaching or both? I refer you to the great blog Kitchen Table Math the sequel for some food for thought.