Archive for October 21st, 2004

21st October

First Published in The New York Sun, October 21, 2004

By Andrew Wolf

Two weeks ago, the Department of Education released the results of the fourth- and eighthgrade math tests administered by the state last May. Needless to say, the announcement was made with much fanfare,highlighting the “progress” being made by the administration. But these results also shed a harsh light on what passes for “standards” in mathematics. Children today are not receiving an adequate background in math. The “dumbing down” of mathematics instruction may even be a national security concern.

We are mistaken if we assume that the advent of cheap pocket calculators has rendered the teaching of math irrelevant. This is one of the dangerous ideas behind the “fuzzy” math instruction that has now been embraced by those running the Department of Education.  (more…)