Sadly, the latest testing data from Ontario’s Education and Quality and Accountability Office is unsurprising: Student performance in mathematics is continuing its downward trend for the fifth straight year.Common Core implementation, anyone?
It doesn’t matter whether your child attends a highly sought-after public school, or a not so stellar one: Chances are the school’s math scores are declining. The provincial government has blamed teachers’ weak backgrounds in math, recognizing that students need more support, but it has not retooled the curriculum.
There is an emerging and disturbing consequence. Families that can afford it are opting in record numbers for private tutoring, while those that cannot are stuck with the status quo. The result is a de facto two-tier system, though the government has undertaken to offer a quality, accessible education to all.
The current curriculum is grounded in “discovery learning,” in which students use their own learning styles to explore math. The emphasis is on problem-solving techniques, real-world applications and greater creativity. The problem is that students don’t have the basics on which to build.
Sunday, September 22, 2013
It's Not Just In The US
I doubt anyone would ever go for this idea, but just imagine for a minute how interesting it would be if, instead of curriculum decisions' being made at the state/province or district or school level, they were actually made at the teacher level? The source of the problems mentioned in this story would be made clear, the choices placed in stark relief, but I genuinely believe there are interests out there who, for political reasons, do not want this problem solved: