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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

You want equity? Teach more -- not less

The foolish idea that teaching kids less math will advance "equity" has spread from California, which has adopted watered-down guidelines that call for delaying algebra, writes Noah Smith. "Cambridge, Massachusetts recently removed algebra and all advanced math from its junior high schools," also citing "equity."


"Progressive" educators will never admit they believe some students just aren't smart enough to learn algebra, Smith writes. But it's "impossible to avoid the conclusion that the idea is to make all kids equal by making them equally unable to learn."


He was a math tutor for years, including "volunteer work tutoring poor Black and Hispanic kids," he writes. "They learned a lot of math!" Furthermore, there's consistent evidence that tutoring is effective.


If public schools don't teach algebra, educated and affluent parents will teach their children at home, hire tutors or pay for private school, Smith writes. Students without family resources "will be out of luck." The name for that is not "equity."


Dallas decided in 2019 to "teach kids more," not less," Smith writes.


"All students who score well on state exams are now automatically enrolled in advanced mathematics, reading, science and social studies — or some combination of the four," explains Jo Napolitano on The 74. Students can't opt out without parental permission.


Enrollment rose, racial gaps narrowed and student scores held steady, she writes. For example, last year's "eighth-grade Algebra I students had similar pass rates as those in years prior, the district said, with 95% of Hispanic students passing the test and 76% meeting grade-level proficiency; 91% of Black students passing and 65% meeting grade level and 95% of English learner students passing the state exam and 74% meeting grade level."


That's equity, writes Smith. It's happening in Texas.

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4 comentários


Richard Rider
Richard Rider
23 de jul. de 2023

Most of the top progressive politicians send their kids to private schools, provide tutors, and/or otherwise make sure that THEIR kids receive a quality education. Meantime they support dumbing down the public school education of their kids' competition. Voters will never figure out that these cunning elitists are INTENTONALLY handicapping most kids -- making sure that the politicians' kids kick ass and rise to the top as adults.

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Bruce Smith
Bruce Smith
22 de jul. de 2023

You find real equity (in opportunity, not necessarily outcome -- but there is no disparate impact theory nonsense that attributes differences in outcome to differences within the school) in Europe and East Asia, where everyone starts sixth grade with the same mathematics, which leads to finishing the equivalent of Algebra 2 by ninth grade for pupils beginning additional maths in that year, and by tenth grade for those opting for elementary math in Grade 9; American states have designed a system where all of their youth, whether in "honors" classes or otherwise, fall (less or more) behind their international peers in this crucial subject, and will struggle to not be replaced in their most desirable neighbourhoods by better educated immigrants,…

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Convidado:
21 de jul. de 2023

What's ironic is that if this trend continues, you will see states like Texas produce better high school graduates, while those blue areas like California and Mass see their quality plummet. That coupled with the new rules on not using race will see the better colleges be forced to accept more students from places like Texas, as a matter of survivial. Which would be a far cry from the situation today. Once at a social gathering an Ivy League admissions person (not knowing I was a teacher or from Texas) basically said, "When we see any application from the South, we automatically think barefoot, hayseed redneck, unless their resume changes our minds."

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Convidado:
21 de jul. de 2023

My old earth science (and later, Anatomy/Physiology) teacher had a favorite expression:


The Cream Will Rise to the Top


i.e. - the harder you work, the more it pays off in the long run in school...asking students to do less and giving them a diploma they didn't earn is nothing but a lie

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