High school math classes should be broadened to focus on goals beyond college and careers, including teaching the math students will need to be literate participants in civic life. Educators should ensure that all students master a core set of “essential concepts” through four years of math coursetaking. And the classes should be detracked to prevent students of color from winding up in dead-end math pathways, saysfrom the National Council of Teachers of mathematics.
The report says the goal of math courses shouldn’t be just to prepare students for college or work, but to enable them to understand and critique the world. That includes being able to identify, interpret, and critique math in social, scientific, and political systems; to understand math in polls, the media, and other communications; and to make good financial decisions and interpret research.
A version of this article appeared in the May 02, 2018 edition of Education Week as Mathematics Education