Here is another warning from mathematicians, the Georgia Council of Supervisors of Mathematics, about the state plan to revert to traditional math in view of high numbers of failing students.
Their members maintain that the state will make a mistake offering two math programs, saying that Georgia has made real progress in math and the plan is “alarming and place this trajectory of success at risk.” The statement includes supporting data charts, which I will try and post in a Google doc later today.
To Whom It May Concern:
As members of the Georgia Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (GSCM), we would like to extend our support and commitment to the implementation of the Common Core Georgia Performance Standards (CCGPS). We strongly believe that ALL students can learn mathematics, and we applaud the state’s commitment to implementing the rigorous Common Core State Standards.
Georgia has earned national recognition for establishing high academic standards in mathematics with the implementation of the Georgia Performance Standards, earning a prestigious A- score from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, one of only eight states earning this esteemed score.
Although the implementation of the GPS in Mathematics only started in 2005-2006, the state is already seeing success as evidenced by:
-Increase in 8th grade NAEP scores (21% scoring at Proficient and above in 2003 compared to 26% in 2009; percent of students scoring Below Basic decreased from 41% in 2003 to 33% in 2009)
-Closing of achievement gap – CRCT 8th grade.
-Gains on more rigorous tests based on more rigorous curriculum
- Overall CRCT score improvements (6th, 7th, and 8th 2010 scores higher than any QCC year)
-Pass rates increased for typical 9th grade state assessments (56% pass rate on 2007-2008 Algebra 1 EOCT compared to 64% pass rate on 2009-2010 Math I EOCT….no useable scores for 2008-2009)
- Pass rates for typical 10th grade state assessments (49% pass rate on 2008-2009 Geometry EOCT compared to 54% pass rate on 2009-2010 Math II EOCT)
These data suggest that Georgia’s approach to raising expectations and achievement of ALL students in mathematics is ‘on track’. Recent discussions about altering Georgia’s current approach are alarming and place this trajectory of success at risk and also jeopardize the upcoming transition to the CCGPS.
We envision that the proposed change to allow multiple pathways in the high school mathematics curriculum will require the GADOE and school districts to support Georgia’s teachers in two major changes in the next 18 months. The first change would be to teach the reshuffled GPS into traditional (domain specific) courses for 2011-2012 and another change occurring in 2012-2013 with full implementation of CCGPS. Additionally, we foresee challenges regarding:
- Capacity to support two pathways in high school mathematics (i.e. resources, funding, scheduling)
- Capacity to reorganize the GPS into traditional/domain specific courses in a timely manner
-Capacity to provide appropriate resources for a traditional/domain specific pathway
-Capacity to create and support tests for two pathways (i.e. resources, funding)
-Diversion of attention and resources which will be needed to prepare for CCGPS implementation
Based on the data, the GCSM supports full and quality implementation of the CCGPS and recommends that the GADOE maintain the current integrated courses pathway without the diversion and distraction of an additional pathway. We respectfully offer our full support to help the GADOE accomplish this ambitious and global endeavor to prepare our students and our state for leadership in education and industry in the 21st century.
Membership of the Georgia Council of Supervisors of Mathematics
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog