Uncommon Core Heightens Race and Class Math Divide

Alan Singer, Huffington Post, March 10, 2014

The uproar over high-stakes testing associated with Common Core in New York State and complaints that children are being tested on things they were not taught, has obscured the deepening of racial, ethnic and class divisions in education in New York and the United States. Not only are the tests unfair, but according to a new study by the National Urban Research Group (NURG), math instruction and the educational system in the United States are deeply unfair, especially to Black and Latino students from poorer families.

The study conducted by the National Urban Research Group The Common Core Promise: A Baseline Assessment of New York City’s Implementation of Common Core Learning Standard, utilized data from 198,556 students in New York City Public Middle Schools who were administered the Common Core math assessment in Spring 2013. Based on their analysis of the data, NURG concluded, “If the 2013 Common Core math assessments are sensible proxies for grade-level expectations, then too many students in the New York City public school system are not prepared to meet the rigorous learning benchmarks. This is particularly the case for black students, Hispanic students, and students living in poverty.”

The results on the Common Core Math tests are disturbing for all students, but especially disturbing when broken down by race, ethnicity, and social class. While the percentage of New York City middle school students scoring at proficiency level (Level 3 and 4) dropped for all grades and all groups, it was much steeper for students from minority and poorer families. For example, in the sixth grade, Hispanic students recorded the steepest declines. Their proficiency rate dropped from 50.4 percent in 2012 to 17.4 percent in 2013. Black students had the second largest decline amongst sixth graders. Their proficiency rate dropped from 45.8 percent in 2012 to 15.3 percent in 2013. White and Asian sixth graders declined, but not by as much, and their proficiencies rates were significantly higher at 49.6% and 62%. Larger percentages of White and Asian students scored at the highest proficiency level (4) while larger percentages of Black and Hispanic students scored at the “well below proficient” level (1). {snip}

The NURG study found other socio-economic factors, especially family income, were important in predicting student success on the math exams. For example, in Manhattan Community School District 2, located in the white upper-middle class neighborhoods below Central Park, including Wall Street, the Upper East Side, and Battery Park City, 52% of sixth graders, 45% of seventh graders, and 48.1% of eighth graders scored at Common Core proficiency. Less than a mile away, a majority of students in Central Harlem Community School District 5 are eligible for federal-assisted free meal programs or reduced priced meals. In Central Harlem, except for one school, sixth graders had a disastrous Common Core math proficient rate of 7.8%, seventh graders 2.8%, and eighth graders 6.9%. Again, the study found similar disparities in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island.

According to the NURG study, “a total number of 51,618 students, more than one-fourth of New York City’s middle school population, attend a school where 9 out of 10 students did not meet Common Core middle school math grade-level learning standards expectations. Nearly 90 percent of these lowest performing classrooms are located in three neighborhoods: the Bronx (40 percent), Central Brooklyn (23 percent), and Harlem (8 percent). A majority of families in these predominately African American and Latino neighborhoods of the Bronx (South Bronx), Brooklyn (including Central Brooklyn and Ocean Hill-Brownsville), and Manhattan (Central Harlem) struggle to meet their basic needs.

{snip}

One surprising finding that is despite the extravagant claims made for charter schools in a recent new massive publicity campaign, charter school students from poorer minority families did not score appreciably better than did similar students who attended traditional public schools n the same communities. In the Harlem Village Academy Charter School the passing rate for students on the math proficiency test dropped from 100% in 2012 to 21.3% in 2013, an astronomical decline of 78.7%. Two highly regarded KIPP academies also had declines in student performance of over 50%. {snip}

{snip}

The New York Times headline, “When 81% Passing Suddenly Becomes 18%,” comes from the last time tests were changed in 2010, not because of the new Common Core assessments in 2013. That year the citywide proficiency rate in English fell from 69% to 42% and math proficiency rate fell from 82% to 54%.

{snip}

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  • sbuffalonative

    Remember how Bush was vilified for ‘No Child Left Behind’? It was always referred to as ‘Bush’s No Child Left Behind’. Does anyone remember how ‘Race to the Top’ was quickly scraped but Obama’s name was never attached to that initiative? Has anyone noticed that no one calls this new program, ‘Obama’s Common Core’?

    The MSM does all they can not to attach any failure to Obama.

    Bush is still being blamed for Katrina but no one blames Obama for ‘Super Storm’ Sandy.

    • Alexandra1973

      I don’t like the Bush dynasty but in all fairness, it’s not his fault that blacks took a disaster and made it even worse with their TNB.

    • willbest

      In fairness if anybody’s name should be attached to Common Core it should be Bill Gates.

    • Katherine McChesney

      I received another questionaire from the National Republican Party yesterday. One of the questions was related to NCLB and ask if we should continue it. I wrote in “NO” is big fat letters. I also asked for an end to Affirmative Action.

  • Good. Now I have hard empirical data to show to the school choice cultists I work with and around. When I hit the politician-political staffer-lobbyist-apparatchik gossip circuit this evening, I’m going to start dropping these studies and watch faces freeze and brains blue screen.

    • DudeWheresMyCountry?

      They will deny the statistics and try to reroute the discussion, or simply walk away calling you names. Same as when one tries to use statistics to Blacks or lefties about Black crime… the Black will get angry and barely be able to control themself as he/she remembers that they are on probation and the leftie will try to question your character as they suddenly realize they have to go before it gets dark to their gated community.

      • Keep in mind the “they” in question, the school choice cultists I work with and around, are not liberals or Democrats, but plain ole garden variety boilerplate conservative Republicans. But you were almost right in how they reacted to it: They panned it saying that it can’t be trusted because it came from the liberal Huffington Post shilling for the teachers unions. I tried to retort with the fact that it also exposed public schools whose teachers are NEA or AFT, but it was like they had concrete in their ear canals.

  • In the Harlem Village Academy Charter School the passing rate for students on the math proficiency test dropped from 100% in 2012 to 21.3% in 2013, an astronomical decline of 78.7%.
    __________________________________
    For at least 40 years the excuse that the test is biased when blacks and browns perform poorly has been dredged up. The excuse is wearing thin. Too many aspiring rappers among them and not enough aspiring mathematicians.

    • Conrad

      Good music, I have been told, is based on math. No wonder they are stuck on rap?!

      • Ron Cheaters

        That’s only if you know how to read music.
        Rap literally isn’t music so it doesn’t apply.

    • evilsandmich

      Those tests can be pretty depressingly unbiased and it still doesn’t matter. I had a friend who had a GED study guide and it had stuff in there like “you have $30 left on your EBT card….” or “you’re crossing the border and have a mile left to travel…”; yuck.

  • Pro_Whitey

    Arne Duncan is a dead man!

    • APaige

      He stated that it was white mothers who were complaining about the core and made a comment that their children were not as smart as they had thought. Everyone knew that once the blacks and browns started taking the tests a large gap where appear.

      • Sick of it

        He makes a good point. Some parents really do think too highly of their children when it is obvious that they aren’t very bright.

  • dd121

    Let’s spend a few billion more on black remedial education and pretend we’re going to close the gap this time.

    • itdoesnotmatter

      No, dd, let us remove those nosy proctors from the exam and correcting rooms, let the unionized teachers have a go at changing reviewing the answers.

    • DudeWheresMyCountry?

      With all the money wasted on these troglodytes we should’ve just built another continent for either them or us! Probably would’ve been cheaper.

  • Luca

    The excuse making contortions that these people engage in to explain the dismal academic results for blacks and browns are truly mind boggling.

    They are like pathological liars who having told the lie so big, so bold and so often, now believe every word of it themselves.

    • dd121

      It’s like a religion. It takes “faith” to believe the opposite of what is obviously empirically true.

      • Luca

        More like a cult, which distinguishes itself from a religion by it’s belief in a destructive, suicidal agenda.

        • Einsatzgrenadier

          Liberalism isn’t like a cult, it is a cult. If forced to confront empirical reality, liberals will insist that truth does not exist and everything is subjective. These are people who literally believe that you can create your own reality by simply imagining something to be true.

  • WR_the_realist

    Any rigorous testing for mathematical competency will always be especially “unfair” to Latinos and blacks.

  • E = MC^2 =
    K = FC^2;

    See?
    We all da same!

    • Ron Cheaters

      Colonels secret recipie

    • e to the pi i is negative one. I can also show you how to use hexamethyl tungsten for making tungsten carbbide or use melamine to make adamantine-phase carbon nitride. I wanted these as armor for tanks.

      Nobody would listen to me.

      • Euler’s identity.
        I got good grades in chemistry, but I still can’t see the end game.

      • r j p

        One day while waiting in line at the bank for my former boss I watched a black female security guard play with a calculator and came up with this thought that made me chuckle:

        “I bet she is trying to calculate whether the absolute value of a tertiary derivative can ever be negative.”

  • Spartacus

    “In the Harlem Village Academy Charter School the passing rate for students on the math proficiency test dropped from 100%…”

    ———————————————————————————————————————

    100% ? Really ? How much fraud needs to happen before anyone notices ?

    • evilsandmich

      I think Sailer has a write-up on his site somewhere. They were basically using a fake test with really low standards and a really low passing score. When they went back to a ‘real’ test (pass rate still seems too high) the fraud was shown for what it was.

  • Spartacus

    ….

    • r j p

      2 + 2 = I needs to go the da baffrooms..

      • Alexandra1973

        Why a bathroom when the street will do?

        • r j p

          Why put your chicken bones in the garbage can 50 feet away when the sidewalk will suffice?

          • Ron Cheaters

            Gotta feed dem rats and roachez gnome sane.. howz I eva goin getz me a nice place if I dunn brings sem roachez?? Dey my tickets to good livingz

  • ncpride

    About the only way to get rid of this monstrosity is seeing the spectacular black/brown failure. Common Core is receiving major backlash from many states, including my own. The reading list in English class for my son under CC is nothing more than an orgy of victimization. No less than three books on the Holocaust, two books on blacks and their ‘civil rights’ struggle, and even one about a poor Japanese girl after Hiroshima. Don’t tell me this is not done on purpose to sow the seeds of White guilt in our youth. Nothing positive about their ancestors what-so-ever. Funnily enough, these books are labeled under the genre of ‘Historical Fiction’, the joke being half the nonsense in these ‘stories’ ARE fiction with just enough historical fact to make them believable.

    • r j p

      If I was a high school English teacher, I would only use two book, Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead (11th grade) and Atlas Shrugged (12th grade). That would be the entire courses’ material. There are enough rarely used words that even an excellent student would require use of a dictionary to read accurately, and it would also provide excellent material for classroom discussion.

      Only complaint I have about Rand is her submissive view towards sex, but we must remember how long ago these books were written.

    • Conrad

      Liberals cannot distinguish fact from fiction. That is why they want the movie – Twelve Years A Slave – shown in history classes.

    • itdoesnotmatter

      nc, this reading list is not education. It is indoctrination.

    • Guest

      Here is a partial Social Studies list for Sixth to Eighth graders.

      • evilsandmich

        To be mildly fair, the following CC image from the Plain Dealer (of all places) references Greek mythology:

    • itdoesnotmatter

      Monitor, please remove my first post to ncpride.

  • Puggg

    It’s like this:

    “But we came up with really rigorous standards. Why aren’t the races equal?”

    • They’re just not. I like schnauzers. They bark a lot. I also like poodles because they are very smart. Our dog is an arctic fox. Maverick watches and hears everything. He thinks hes a dog and gets shots like a dog. The vet said “Oh, goodness”, but he’s legally a dog.

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    math instruction and the educational system in the United States are deeply unfair, especially to Black and Latino students from poorer families.

    Common Core is certainly unfair to blacks and Latino students!

    Just LOOK at these math questions from racist CC tests and worksheets!!:

    “Use number bonds to help you skip-count by seven by making ten or adding to the ones.”

    “Add 26 + 17 by breaking apart numbers to make a ten. Use a number that adds with the 6 in 26 to make a 10. Since 6 + 4 = 10, use 4.”

    The old methods of teaching math using such archaic practices as rote- learning multiplication tables never worked: That’s why Americans were never able to land a man on the moon or accomplish great feats of engineering using only slide rules.

    If only they’d had Common Core math! Imagine what could have been done in the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s if schools had taught “new math,” the beautiful buildings and bridges that could have been built, satellites that could have been launched, technology that could have been discovered!

    • Alexandra1973

      I just add it in my head. And I remember to carry the 1.

    • Simonetta

      WOW!

      Just by reading AmRen I’d get the impression that blacks and browns have great difficulty doing math because of their genetic predisposition. But looking at the examples of how math is taught gives me the impression that the people who put together this particular math curriculum have neither an understanding of math or any ability to teach it to children.
      This is madness. There *may* be some theoretical sense to this approach somewhere, but I don’t see it.
      Now I did “New Math” in the 1960s where it was considered important to teach that 1+4 = 10 in base 5, and I work daily in hexadecimal where 0x1a5 + 30dh = 1202, but that I can and have explained to people how it works. Because that actually does makes sense; after a careful and patient explanation.
      I *think* I know what they are doing with “number bonds” and “skip count” here, but I can’t imagine either why they are doing it or how they ever imagined that your average elementary-education major could understand it or teach it.
      So maybe, just maybe the B & B’s (blacks and browns) are not just cognitively deficient. Maybe, just maybe, the entire 21st century approach to math education is transparently insane.
      By the way, I spend a lot of time in the local library where I occasionally overhear after-school homework-helper one-on-ones between high school students learning Calculus and their adult tutors. I can follow what I hear even though I only had ‘bonehead’ Calc for liberal-arts majors in college long ago. So at least in high school, it would seem that real math is actually being taught. But by then it is probably too late for anyone who spent elementary school being spoon-fed this junk!

      • Bon, From the Land of Babble

        One might get the impression that teaching math in such a manner is not supposed to work; that this convoluted, incomprehensible method of teaching math has been designed specifically to fail.

        Then after a few state test cycles where results clearly show that the gobble-de-gook method of teaching math fails to close the learning gap — another new, billion dollar program, also destined to fail, will be required to replace the current failed program.

        It’s been this way since the 60s, with one billion dollar teaching program after another, ad infinitum. This keeps the politically connected and those who write the programs (at Harvard, Princeton, Columbia) employed forever with fat salaries.

        • Luca

          It has been theorized that this “new math” is part of the “Dumbing Down of America”. Ignorant masses are far easier to take advantage of and manipulate.

          Before you know it, the ignorant masses will be swayed by false prophets and believing in catchy, mindless, mantras like “Yes We Can” or “Hope and Change” or “If you like your doctor…”.

          • Bon, From the Land of Babble

            The government believes that the fewer that know what they’re doing the better. If math is taught so that no one gets it, then it’s easier to hide budgets, spending, entitlements.

            The more the public knows what their tax money is going to support, the better.

            Here’s another incomprehensible math question, as is, from an elementary-level, Common Core worksheet:

            (we’re talking kids here who can barely add and subtract numbers from 1-10).

          • Luca

            Now once these kids can’t solve math problems, let’s teach them a revised history. Who was George Washington? A Great General of the Revolution? The first President? Wrong, he was a racist slave owner who made money from free black labor.

            Dumb them down, indoctrinate them, re-educate them, give them electronic entertainment, drugs, sex and handouts. Keep them divided against each other, teach them slogans and make them intolerant of anyone with a differing opinion. They will follow your teachings without being able to solve problems on their own or to understand their history. They are human cattle, they are fed content, ignorant and dependent upon the hand that feeds them.

          • r j p

            This example makes no sense.
            Wouldn’t it help if we knew how many friends Juanita had?

          • Alexandra1973

            They don’t even tell you how many friends she has.

            That’s like asking you to solve x + y = 100 + z. Find the value of y.

          • Who Me?

            Nobody knows how many friends or how many stickers in each bag… guess you get to pick the answer that makes you feel good?

      • dd121

        Really, the concept of positional notation isn’t that difficult to understand. Everyone knows that base 10 is what Jesus died on the cross for.

      • Who Me?

        I never really had trouble with math in school, but if someone was trying to teach me this cr–err… junk this way, I’m sure I would have had a LOT of trouble, if I had ever learned it at all. This stuff is just messed up!

    • Conrad

      Maybe I’m showing my age here, but this is a crazy way to do math.

      • Spartacus

        It’s not crazy, just stupid .

      • Sick of it

        I’m not very old, but we did math the old way in my schools. I’m grateful for all the demanding, old school teachers I had. Believe it or not, I actually appreciated most of them at the time.

    • r j p

      I have my own unique way of doing math, well multiplication and division, but this is just a mess. One could never calculate a VWAP if this is how they learned math.

      • Bon, From the Land of Babble

        What’s crazy is that rote memorization of the multiplication tables is NOT ALLOWED in the CC curriculum — yet calculators are NOT ALLOWED on the TIMED CC state tests.

        Not knowing the multiplication tables by heart will be a huge handicap when the state math tests come up.

        • ncpride

          I remember using multiplication flash-cards and drilling my kids endlessly, knowing how vital it is in math to memorize them. They hated it at the time, but appreciate my efforts now.

          • r j p

            When I was in elementary school we played a math game.
            Three single digit number cards would be thrown down.
            Let’s say this set was 9 3 2.
            Object was to create a valid equation.
            So in this example it is 3 squared = 9. (Sorry don’t have up arrow on laptop).
            I think we also did it with 4 cards at times but that is much more difficult.

          • Irishgirl

            There’s a game called “Equate” that you might enjoy.

          • r j p

            That’s pretty cool. It’s like Scrabble with numbers.

        • r j p

          One boring day years back I created this whole joke calling for changing the US numerical system to Base 11. The new 10 would be X and the new 11 would be 10. Episodes of Sesame Street would of course be brought to you by the new numbers X and 10.

          Sometimes I just need to amuse myself.

      • Bon, From the Land of Babble

        Don’t laugh. There is a publicly funded school in the LAUSD called Academia Semillas del Pueblo Xinaxcalmecac. The school is run by a hard-core Hispanic racist and teaches the ancient Nahutal language of the Aztecs and its base-20 math system.

        That’s a great way to help kids succeed — teach them a math system that no one uses and is of no use in the modern world and a language that no one speaks.

        The school board even renewed their charter even though their test scores were embarrassingly low.

        • r j p

          What I was doing with my Base 11 math system was a joke to occupy down time.
          But teaching students in the USA a non-standard numerical system equates with child abuse as they will never be able to function in this country until they learn Base 10. Not saying children should not be exposed to non-standard numerical systems, but they should not be the basis of instruction.

          • Simonetta

            Base 16 is commonly used by programmers and electronics technicians because it is an easy way to deal with the long strings of ones and zeros that act as open/closed switches in electrically-based computers.
            Every pattern of four binary digits can be expressed as a single digit of 0 to 9 followed by the letters ‘a’ to ‘f’ for representing the numbers 10 to 15. Programmers amuse each other by coming up with base-16 words that actually numbers: things like DEADBEEF for 3,735,928,559 and using these puns to represent specific computer error conditions.
            This is one of the few instances where ‘new math’ of the 1960’s is actually useful. But it appears to not taught to the general population of current schoolchildren.
            I recognize that there is a significant possibility that you know all this already. My apologies if my message here may appear somewhat patronizing. But your private little game of base 11 is actually an important and relevant modern concept.

          • r j p

            No offense taken. Thank you for respecting my little amusement.
            I actually thought about mentioning hexadecimal.

        • I can manage base-16 mathematics.

  • 1stworlder

    They just don’t know how to cheat like Atlanta and Philly schools do.

  • 1stworlder

    The common core example of showing 90 divided by 18 taking 108 different steps showed it would favor Asians who are better at following systems than understanding.

    • Simonetta

      How I would teach an 8-year-old how to approach the problem ’90 divided by 18′ is to first spend a lot of time having them understand that 90/18 is ‘how many groups of 18 can you take from a big group of 90?’. Then I would do one set of repeated subtractions of 18 from the large group until there were 5 groups of 18 in each group with no remainder. Then I would go through the process with several different dividend/divisor sets until the student understood the basic principal of what was happening.

      Then I would show them how to do it with a calculator.

      And only then would I show them how to do it the traditional way of making a guess of what the quotient would be and doing the multiplication to see if it fit (the way children were taught from the time that position-based number systems were invented until the 1980’s).

      And then, in order to prepare them for a possible job in the high-tech future where they will be spending the rest of their lives, I would explain how a calculator works.

      It would take a long time, and it would not be a schooling in the standard sense of having subjects rigorously split into specific focused topics like arithmetic, science, grammar, etc…, but it would be a comprehensive education (eventually).

      That’s what I would do, but I’m not a trained professional elementary school teacher with a Master’s degree.

      But I’ve never met anyone with an Education degree, Master’s or Doctorate, who could understand how you can get twenty different telephone conversations happening on a single pair of ordinary copper wires without having any one conversation being able to be heard by any of the other conversation parties. It’s called adaptive pulse-code modulation. It’s not that hard to understand and it was invented eighty years ago, so it’s not really modern high-tech.

      But education majors can never understand anything about math or science, regardless of their race. When I was a kid I used to wonder why the teachers got a textbook with all the answers in it. When I grew up, I realized that elementary school teachers needed to have the book with all the answers in it.

      • r j p

        90 / 18 = 90 / 9 / 2 = 5

  • willbest

    Genetics gonna be.

    Though I suspect 21.6% passage rate is appreciably better than 17.4% assuming the school had at least 100 students take the test. A 100% passage rate smacks of cheating though.

  • dondavy

    The rules for math are the same for every one. It does’t work one way for whites and another for minorities. Science of all nature is the same, only one set of rules. If you are to stupid or lazy to get it,to bad.

  • Spartacus

    Odd… I can’t seem to be able to see replies to my posts while I’m logged in Disgus. When I log off, I can see them though . Tried clearing cache/cookies, didn’t do anything. Anyone else having this ?

    • IstvanIN

      All the time. Even logging out I can not see all the replies. Weird. I click on the red dot and and see one reply, then click on the red again and see another reply but not the first one. Odd.

    • ncpride

      Having the exact same issue. Disqus must be having problems.

      • MBlanc46

        Disqus is almost always having problems.

  • IstvanIN

    If we only converted to the metric system the blacks would be OK. Yes, that is it. IQ problem solved. And spoke Swahili. Yup, dump English, teach them Swahili and all will be well.

    • MBlanc46

      Sorry, but they’re stupid in Swahili, too.

  • PvtCharlieSlate

    Maybe we should just give these “minorities” the option of dropping out of the public school system any time past the fourth grade. Seems like that would save a lot time, trouble and expense.

    Just one condition: if you drop out and don’t finish high school you won’t ever be eligible for unemployment benefits.

    • MBlanc46

      Or give them vocational training that might actually be of benefit to them.

      • Ron Cheaters

        Garbagemen and hospital custodians have marginally dangerous jobs.. this is why a hospital custodian can make $20/h and a nurse fresh out of  school will only make $15. Something to think about before going to med school… or go to med school working as a a hospital custodian…
        Unfortunately for blacks hospital custodian is usually the finish line and not the beginning of the race.

        • MBlanc46

          Janitors, refuse collectors, construction laborers, dishwashers are all occupations that most lower IQ blacks ought to be able to handle. It would be in our interest to so employ them.

  • Hank Rearden

    Are you SURE you want them out of the neighborhood, Spike?

  • c684570

    Throw it in the garbage bin of failed socialist/egalitarian ideas like “Head Start”.

    • dd121

      It has only failed but it never fails. You see even though “the gap” isn’t being closed, Obama has doubled down and spends more on it each year. We’ll pretend it will work next year.

  • MBlanc46

    It sounds to me as if, yet again, test scores and race turn out to be significantly correlated.

  • Lord Sandwich

    Guess what. If you send your kid to private school they still do common core math. As much as I was all prepared to hate on it, it’s not so bad. I work with my 4th grader every night and she is learning to do math. Yeah, some of it is very different from what I was taught in the 60’s and 70’s, (Matrix Model multiplication?, Distributive property?) but it does work, and she is learning to do math. There are a lot of story problems and converting of units of measurement. If, at the end, they can add, subtract, multiply, and divide, that’s all that really matters. (Except for that evil division – it’s so divisive.)

    • ShermanTMcCoy

      Division is out greatest strength?

      : )

      • Alexandra1973

        Theirs, apparently, is multiplication.

      • dd121

        If you like division you can keep your…

    • jane johnson

      Don’t you mean the redistributive property?

  • Dale McNamee

    Bring back the multiplication,division,addition, and subtraction tables. That’s how I learned and gave me a great foundation for algebra,geometry,trigonometry,and calculus.
    I remember the “New Math” craze… Set theory is fine, but how often is it used in daily life ?
    Calculators should be banned… Learning how to do it longhand is much better for learning the basics…
    Then there’s what I call “math proving”…using the opposite function to prove the answer.
    For example multipling the divisor and the answer to get the starting number…90/18=5 5*18=90,etc.

    • MBlanc46

      Set theory is one of the foundations of mathematics (the other being logic). You learn the structure better when you understand the foundations.

      • Dale McNamee

        I agree with you but my concern is that everyday math is done with numbers and there are children being applauded for “understanding the theory” while reaching the wrong answer ( i.e. 2+2=5 ) and is not corrected…

        I remember learning the “theory” behind math when counting shapes, etc. as I learned numbers ( 3 circles + 2 circles= 5 circles,etc.) prior to attending grade school ( I didn’t go to Pre-K or kindergarten, my parents taught me ).

        But once I got the basics down, then I could appreciate set theory and logic..

        My concern is that the basics be taught first and set theory & logic can be covered within learning why 2+2=4.

        Seeing people becoming dependent on technology to do simple math…
        I “freaked out” a cashier at the local McDonalds when I came up with the exact price of my meal (including tax) before she could use the cash register…

        That’s what scares me… Illiteracy and math “illiteracy”…

        • r j p

          When I was in grade two the teacher asked the class what some shape was. Classmates said “oval”. I said “ellipse”. Not sure the teacher even knew what an ellipse was, but that was what I learned in Montessori.

          • Dale McNamee

            She was probably stunned that you kids knew what “oval” and “ellipse” meant…

        • MBlanc46

          There’s an irreducible core of any mathematical system that requires memorization (operator–addition or multiplication–tables, for example). My guess is–I don’t know of any empirical research on the subject–is that children learn this better by using it than by rote.

  • Tom_in_Miami

    “In the Harlem Village Academy Charter School the passing rate for
    students on the math proficiency test dropped from 100% in 2012 to 21.3%
    in 2013, an astronomical decline of 78.7%. Two highly regarded KIPP
    academies also had declines in student performance of over 50%.”

    OK, what’s the catch? Did they finally put reliable monitors in the testing room and in the areas where the tests are scored?

  • Garrett Brown

    Dat demographic decline.

  • Commune Core is the reductio ad absurdum of the Bush-era mantra:

    “The soft bigotry of low expectations.”

    • Dale McNamee

      “Bush-era mantra” ?

      “Low expectations” fueled LBJ’s “Great Society” and every program that proceeded from it…Especially school curricula…

  • Ograf

    I have a good idea, let’s just give any poor children excellent grades without them having to do anything. They can all end up with Bachelors and Masters degrees and make a lot of money. Oh wait, they will actually be wanted to produce in accordance with their degree .
    ok that is my next problem to figure out.

    • FlaVet

      EZ…let them “work” for each other.

  • Katherine McChesney

    No matter how dumb a person is they can find a job or jobs to support themselves.

  • DudeWheresMyCountry?

    The only thing unfair is that intelligence is not dispersed evenly between the races. Funny how the “educators” can’t ever get away from racial differences… and pretend to not know the reasons why. If the physical education educators tested thousands of students of all races and ages on their jumping and running acumen and presumably found differences in race with Blacks on average testing highest nobody would ever dare call it unfair… it would simply be that Blacks on average are better. Conversely when their pets do badly due to lack of adequate brain power for first-world education the answer is always unfairness and institutional change. I believe the greatest triumph of African people has been getting the first-world, The West to allow them to get away with being stupid while pretending they are civilized humans.

    • Simonetta

      :I believe the greatest triumph of African people has been getting the
      first-world, The West to allow them to get away with being stupid while
      pretending they are civilized humans.

      Yes, I was thinking along those lines recently. Every decade or so, the Germans remember “Kristalnacht”: the last great pogrom before the Holocast. On that night in 1938, the Germans went nuts and burned down every Jewish business and beat/killed every Jewish person they came across. In 1966/1967 and in Los Angeles in 1993, the blacks went nuts and burned down every white business they could reach and beat/killed every white person unlucky enough to be in their path.

      The Germans were endlessly condemned for this crime by the civilized world. They endlessly apologize, accept the legitimacy of their punishment from the civilized world (by having all their cities burned to the ground and their country divided for forty years), and insist that it will never happen again.

      The blacks on the other hand, celebrate their world-class criminal behavior, teach their children that this was a major victory in the ‘liberation’ of their race from the evil whites, and *promise* the civilized peoples of the world that they will do it over and over again if their demands for more money and greater acceptance as fellow civilized people are not constantly met.

      Every few years the Germans remember Krystalnacht by sending schoolchildren to bring flowers to the living relatives of people who were killed on that night.

      Think that the blacks will ever send children with apology flowers to the relatives of the people that they so brutally killed during the ‘race incidents’ of the 1960s and 1993???

  • DudeWheresMyCountry?

    I think we can improve upon this; cultures and ethnic groups aren’t dumb because they are poor, they’re poor because they’re dumb.

  • FlaVet

    ” District 5 are eligible for federal-assisted free meal programs or reduced priced meals.”

    Can this be correlated to the low, low scores? If so they better stop eating these meals….they’re obviously not brain food they’re getting fed.