Opinion
Education Letter to the Editor

Blame ‘Integrated Math’ for Our Poor Test Scores

February 08, 2005 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

Your article about our children’s poor math performance (“Poor Math Scores on World Stage Trouble U.S.,” Jan. 5, 2005) quotes the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics’ Cathy L. Seeley as saying that the problem is a lack of real-world problem-solving in our schools. We work extensively with inner-city kids here in Minneapolis. We have studied the problem of poor math performance extensively. In Minneapolis, only 28 percent of African-Americans in the public schools can pass the 8th grade math test.

The problem? Something called “integrated math.” You can learn all about it from the NCTM. Real-world problem-solving, calculators, no memorization, and so on. Integrated math has invaded and infected the curriculum everywhere, courtesy of the NCTM. The result? No proficiency in the basic skills children need to do higher-order math. The idea seems to be that you put children together in a room with a calculator and “real-life problems” and have at it. Forget facility with algorithms, fractions, decimals.

I have truly met the enemy here in Minneapolis, and it is the NCTM and integrated math.

Gregory J. Pulles

Plymouth, Minn.

A version of this article appeared in the February 09, 2005 edition of Education Week as Blame ‘Integrated Math’ For Our Poor Test Scores

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Attend to the Whole Child: Non-Academic Factors within MTSS
Learn strategies for proactively identifying and addressing non-academic barriers to student success within an MTSS framework.
Content provided by Renaissance
Classroom Technology K-12 Essentials Forum How to Teach Digital & Media Literacy in the Age of AI
Join this free event to dig into crucial questions about how to help students build a foundation of digital literacy.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: June 19, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: June 12, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: May 29, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: May 8, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read