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Trend-starting Texas drops algebra II mandate
Chron.com ^ | January 25, 2014 | Will Weissert

Posted on 01/25/2014 6:32:57 PM PST by gooblah

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Policy pop quiz: Does Texas - algebra II = success?

The state that started a trend by making high school students tackle algebra II is now abandoning the policy in a move praise by school districts for affording more flexibility. But some policy experts are nervous because nearly 20 states have followed Texas' lead in requiring the vigorous course.

(Excerpt) Read more at chron.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: algebra; education
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1 posted on 01/25/2014 6:32:57 PM PST by gooblah
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To: gooblah

It’s the end of Weapons of Math Instruction.


2 posted on 01/25/2014 6:34:02 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: gooblah

Next thing you know, CongressCritters won’t know how to balance a Budget.


3 posted on 01/25/2014 6:35:20 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: gooblah

Schools kill learning, but you’ve got to take some algebra even if you’re just going to work in the trades. Is geometry being dropped.

Texas and other states with large Latino populations have a major challenge on the education front. Latinos for the most part are not education oriented.

Lower standards just lead to lower standards.


4 posted on 01/25/2014 6:35:35 PM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: gooblah
Algebra II is "vigorous"? Do they mean "rigorous"?

I took Calculus in HS. And Trigonometry. And Geometry. I started with Algebra II. And I went on to college as a Liberal Arts major because my math skills were nothing special.

5 posted on 01/25/2014 6:36:43 PM PST by ClearCase_guy (Anti-Complacency League! Baby!)
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To: gooblah

I disagree with lessening Math requirements. If anything, Texas school systems should require at least pre-calculus by graduation.


6 posted on 01/25/2014 6:37:49 PM PST by 3Fingas (Sons and Daughters for Freedom and Rededication to the Principles of the U.S. Constitution...)
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To: Paladin2
Next thing you know, CongressCritters won’t know how to balance a Budget.

Thay don't NOW!

7 posted on 01/25/2014 6:37:54 PM PST by SandRat (Duty - Honor - Country! What else needs said?)
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To: gooblah

IMO, algebra is NOT a “vigorous” course. Maybe they mean “rigorous.” Maybe journalists could skip math and take more rigorous English classes before they get jobs in the industry.


8 posted on 01/25/2014 6:38:43 PM PST by generally (Don't be stupid. We have politicians for that.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

just snort some of this and forget all that abc bull....


9 posted on 01/25/2014 6:38:45 PM PST by bigheadfred
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To: gooblah

Somebody has to flip our burgers.


10 posted on 01/25/2014 6:38:50 PM PST by DannyTN (A>)
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To: gooblah

Somebody has to flip our burgers.


11 posted on 01/25/2014 6:38:51 PM PST by DannyTN (A>)
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To: gooblah

Yikes. I took Algebra II at government school in Austin, 20+ years ago. Thanks, Mrs McGowan.


12 posted on 01/25/2014 6:39:11 PM PST by andyk (I have sworn...eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.)
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To: gooblah

I heard gov Rick Perry promoting Texas’ education. Ditching Algebra 2, what next Chemistry?


13 posted on 01/25/2014 6:39:56 PM PST by RginTN
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To: gooblah

I hope there are contingency plans to deal with the resulting deluge of useless eaters who will have a high proclivity to take to violence because they have nothing to lose...


14 posted on 01/25/2014 6:39:58 PM PST by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
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To: gooblah
Supporters say fewer course mandates give students more time to focus on vocational training for high-paying jobs that don't necessarily require a college degree, such as at Toyota's factory in San Antonio or oil and chemical giant BASF's facilities on the Gulf Coast.

Uh, Algebra IS vocational instruction. Both Algebra and Calcoolus (see "Stand and Deliver") help create an instinctive feel for how things work. That's all math is, after all, a codified symbolic way of describing how stuff works. So math in general IS vocational/life training unless Toyota and BASF want mindless button-pushing drones with no analytical ability. And if that's what they want, the State of Texas has no business delivering that.

15 posted on 01/25/2014 6:40:40 PM PST by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: gooblah

I’ve spent all of my career in engineering related work and have never needed Black, Latino, Women or other related social education.


16 posted on 01/25/2014 6:40:56 PM PST by umgud (2A can't survive dem majorities)
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To: SandRat

Oh yeah, I forgot.


17 posted on 01/25/2014 6:41:34 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: umgud

Do your knuckles hurt from scraping the ground all day? ;-)


18 posted on 01/25/2014 6:42:17 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: ClearCase_guy
Both of my sons had Algebra I in 8th Grade.

For some stupid reason, they then had to take Geometry their Freshman Year in HS, and then Algebra II as Sophmores. Seems out of order to me ...

My oldest is a Junior taking Calculus after he tested out of Probability and Statistics.. He'll have Trigonometry his Senior year. Youngest will be following same pattern.

I'd swear I remember taking Algebra I and II in Junior High ... hated Geometry in High School but loved Physics, Calc and Trig.

19 posted on 01/25/2014 6:43:11 PM PST by usconservative (When The Ballot Box No Longer Counts, The Ammunition Box Does. (What's In Your Ammo Box?))
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To: usconservative

Me too. Hated the formalistic way they teach geometry. The degree of geometry I care about, mostly trig, was adequately covered in Algebra I/II, and Calculus A/B.


20 posted on 01/25/2014 6:45:00 PM PST by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: usconservative

I hated proofs in geometry. Physics was the best.


21 posted on 01/25/2014 6:46:31 PM PST by andyk (I have sworn...eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.)
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To: gooblah

McDonalds cash registers have pictures of each product instead of numbers. So the graduates of these watered- down high schools will have a career path open to them.


22 posted on 01/25/2014 6:47:15 PM PST by faithhopecharity (C)
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To: andyk

You know how to tell what discipline science class you’ve walked into? If the experiment subject moves, it’s biology; if it smells or blows up, it’s chemistry; if somebody gets hurt, it’s physics!


23 posted on 01/25/2014 6:48:26 PM PST by Still Thinking (Freedom is NOT a loophole!)
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To: gooblah
someone with their qualifications would have no trouble finding a top-flight job in either the food service or housekeeping industries.
24 posted on 01/25/2014 6:50:27 PM PST by Chode (Stand UP and Be Counted, or line up and be numbered - *DTOM* -vvv- NO Pity for the LAZY - 86-44)
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To: gooblah

Any average student should be able to handle algebra. While it may not be needed for students who are going into careers that don’t require college, it would still be a good idea for them to acquire some of the discipline and logical thinking skills that are developed by math classes.

If the argument is that math is a waste of time for these students, then couldn’t that be said of many other subjects as well? What career benefit do they get from science, history, social studies, geography, literature, gym, or foreign language class? There is no sense in having them take art or music unless they are going to become artists or musicians.

I think the real reason behind this is one of two things: 1. Educrats and social engineers don’t want evidence of their failures that show up as the poor scores of their students in subjects like math.
2. Educrats and social engineers want more time available to indoctrinate students with subjects that teach them how to vote (dem/socialist), how to “think” (that is, what politically correct liberal opinions they are supposed to have), how to defy their parents, how to be anti-religious, how to be gay and/or promiscuous, etc.


25 posted on 01/25/2014 6:52:29 PM PST by generally (Don't be stupid. We have politicians for that.)
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To: Paladin2

A basic fluency in math is good, but advanced algebra is not for everyone and forcing those kids who don’t have a need for it is not a great plan.


26 posted on 01/25/2014 6:56:04 PM PST by Ouderkirk (To the left, everything must evidence that this or that strand of leftist theory is true)
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To: gooblah

Algebra II is all the crap that nobody ever uses in the real world. Always wonder why anybody other than a mathematician would care.


27 posted on 01/25/2014 6:57:16 PM PST by Some Fat Guy in L.A. (Still bitterly clinging to rational thought despite it's unfashionability)
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To: gooblah

It should be an”Elective”.In the meantime,how’s about teaching them”The Three R’s”???????????????????????


28 posted on 01/25/2014 6:57:33 PM PST by bandleader
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To: ClearCase_guy

me2 I taught myself Algebra I in 8th grade


29 posted on 01/25/2014 7:00:51 PM PST by RightLady
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To: andyk

Especially the day I solved the problem up at the board as Angle Side Side.


30 posted on 01/25/2014 7:02:56 PM PST by NonValueAdded (It's not the penalty, it's the lack of coverage on 1 Jan. Think about it.)
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To: umgud

Exactly. They never want to allow math, science, and engineering students to skip studying black history, women’s studies, gender studies, hispanic studies, sensitivity training, social studies.

They also insist on a certain amount of English, foreign languages, literature, music, art, gym class, home ec, shop class.

Personally, I could have stopped taking English classes around 7th or 8th grade and I would still have verbal and grammatical skills that exceed those of most journalists.

What I’d really like to see is some sort of proficiency exam which allows students who meet the standards to either skip having to sit through additional instruction aimed at those who are struggling, or else puts them into some sort of high level program that actually challenges and engages them.


31 posted on 01/25/2014 7:03:42 PM PST by generally (Don't be stupid. We have politicians for that.)
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To: gooblah

I believe Algebra II will still be required if a student wants to graduate with the highest degree plan.


32 posted on 01/25/2014 7:03:59 PM PST by outinyellowdogcountry
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To: gooblah

They should have dropped 1/3 of geometry instead. The proofs section.


33 posted on 01/25/2014 7:05:08 PM PST by Darren McCarty (Abortion - legalized murder for convenience)
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To: faithhopecharity
if you want to make one of them cry, give them a ten a one and a nickle for a $6.05 order...
34 posted on 01/25/2014 7:05:17 PM PST by Chode (Stand UP and Be Counted, or line up and be numbered - *DTOM* -vvv- NO Pity for the LAZY - 86-44)
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To: Chode

Yes yes. That’s way too complicated for graduates of so many of our public schools nowadays. When the commie Chinese finish taking over they’ll have to find ways of dealing with millions of these poor young people totally lacking any real learning or skills.


35 posted on 01/25/2014 7:11:18 PM PST by faithhopecharity (C)
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To: gooblah

Seriously, at least 99% of our adult population never uses algebra II. Geometry, Chemistry, History and even Home Economics are many times more important. If we really wanted to help the next generation we’d require courses in entrepreneurship.


36 posted on 01/25/2014 7:12:58 PM PST by freedomfiter2 (Brutal acts of commission and yawning acts of omission both strengthen the hand of the devil.)
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To: gooblah

Lower those standards!!

Pretty soon all you need to graduate is to show proficiency with a condom and bong


37 posted on 01/25/2014 7:14:25 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: gooblah

They’ve already substracted recess, art, music and cursive writing. Dumbing down future voters.


38 posted on 01/25/2014 7:15:15 PM PST by bgill
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To: andyk
"I hated proofs in geometry. "

Geo was a whole different thing. It's the intuitive/theoretical class. Almost like being a lawyer, but way less sleazy.

39 posted on 01/25/2014 7:17:08 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: freedomfiter2
"If we really wanted to help the next generation we’d require courses in"

micro and macro Economics, Marxism/Fascist/Socialist History of killing millions of peeps, The Legal system (Justice only for those who can pay), The benefits of Personal Liberty.

40 posted on 01/25/2014 7:21:29 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: Some Fat Guy in L.A.

I liked practical math very much in elementary school and absolutely resented havng to take Algebra and Geometry.


41 posted on 01/25/2014 7:26:33 PM PST by Ciexyz
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To: Still Thinking
"if somebody gets hurt, it’s physics!"

Be careful in X-Ray Diffraction Labs.

42 posted on 01/25/2014 7:28:34 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: generally

EBT, 0bama phone and ‘rat voting Classes.


43 posted on 01/25/2014 7:30:00 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: gooblah
I completed post high school vocational courses back in the early to mid 1980's. The courses were Commercial Air Conditioning & Refrigeration and the second course was Industrial Electricity. In high school I took basic math courses but took it three years with no Algebra.

So does a person need algebra to work in advanced vocational fields? No. It might help but it is not by any stretch a must have. After high school I went in the Navy and worked on the HVAC and refrigeration system for the ship. We had ten centrifugal chill water A/C units combined total of 2000 tons capacity. My job was maintenance and repair of those units and our refrigeration gear. While I did have to know some basic formulas it was not complex. I also had to maintain a balanced heat load throughout the ship making sure all areas got cooled dowm and how to reconfigure if they weren't. Therometers told me what I needed to know. Experience taught me what to do.

After I got out I took the two courses I mentioned. Somewhere along the way the state decided to add or supliment Math class into the courses separate from the vocational class. I already knew the needed math to do my job.

A Math instructor swore to me I could not go on a job and place a ladder against a building safely without using either pencil and paper and a measuring tape or a calculator to figure the proper angles. I asked him if he'd ever seen an extension ladder before? I told him place your feet with your toes at the base of the ladder with your feet at each side of it. Then you extend your arms straight out and grasp ladder. If you can do that and the ground is safe then the ladder is safe to climb. He being a Math teacher could not grasp that time and trades honored concept. I could not grasp his advanced math he was insisting on above and beyond what I needed. Not all Math teachers are cut out to climb ladders and not all students are cut out for advanced math courses.

Ironically during that time I enlisted for an Army NG stint as a 13-B. I hauled ammo but we had courses on reading grid maps and getting grid coordinates, azimuth, and back azimuth etc. I had that figured in a few minutes enough to where I was asked if I wanted to be a forward observer instead. I said no thanks LOL.

Some people have the gift of being able to do complex math. I am not one of those gifted. I can do functional math in my head. Grocery shopping? I don't need the calculator. I have a short cut that puts me within about 5% of my grocery budget. I've worked as a clerk before in a store that did not allow use of the cash register total keying in amount paid to give back change. We laid the amount the customer gave on top of the till drawer, counted back to customer the change from amount due to amount given. We didn't come up short and that protected both us and customer from mistakes. Many kids today pass Algebra but can't do basic math in their heads that they actually need. That should be the schools primary focus.

I'm not against advanced Math courses especially for those with the gift for it. I am against making it mandatory at a high school level for students who would be served far better in basic fundamental Math courses. For Voc/Tech students half their sophmore and all their junior and senior year should be strictly vocational courses {I recommend taking two} focused with a goal of Co-op program the senior year. My senior year of high school I was working an 8-5 full time job. Being versitle and adaptable to both your employers needs and the job market will go a long ways. I've done several skilled professions including OTR truck driving at one point.

44 posted on 01/25/2014 7:55:14 PM PST by cva66snipe ((Two Choices left for U.S. One Nation Under GOD or One Nation Under Judgment? Which one say ye?))
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To: gooblah

Teaching Math In 1950

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of
production is 4/5 of the price. What is his profit?

Teaching Math In 1960

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of
production is 4/5 of the price, or $80. What is his profit?

Teaching Math In 1970

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of
production is $80. Did he make a profit?

Teaching Math In 1980

A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of
production is $80 and his profit is $20 Your assignment: Underline the
number 20.

Teaching Math In 1990

A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and
inconsiderate and cares nothing for the habitat of animals or the
preservation of our woodlands. He does this so he can make a profit of
$20. What do you think of this way of making a living? Topic for class
participation after answering the question: How did the birds and
squirrels feel as the logger cut down their homes? (There are no wrong
answers.)

Teaching Math In 2006

Un ranchero vende una carretera de maderapara $100. El cuesto de la
produccion era $80. Cuantos tortillas se puede comprar?


45 posted on 01/25/2014 7:56:55 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: cva66snipe
"I'm not against advanced Math courses especially for those with the gift for it. I am against making it mandatory at a high school level for students who would be served far better in basic fundamental Math courses. For Voc/Tech students half their sophmore and all their junior and senior year should be strictly vocational courses {I recommend taking two} focused with a goal of Co-op program the senior year. My senior year of high school I was working an 8-5 full time job. Being versitle and adaptable to both your employers needs and the job market will go a long ways. I've done several skilled professions including OTR truck driving at one point.

I teach high school science, and I agree with you. My third track chemistry students are required to pass chem to graduate, but most of them are not really capable of making the connections or doing the math. It's very frustrating for them and for me. Most do their best, but it's only by 'cooking the books' that many of them pass the course. Many would be better served by a vocationally oriented course where they could learn skills that they will actually use. I don't like to pretend, but if they are working hard and truly not equipped to understand, I can't in good conscience fail 2/3 of the class. Inflexible policies put many people into situations which lead to dishonest grading and waste of time and resources.

46 posted on 01/25/2014 8:21:55 PM PST by Think free or die
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To: Still Thinking
if somebody gets hurt, it’s physics!

That's true. Mr. Roberts made us run up and down stairs to measure hpw.

He emphasized the position of force on a lever by yelling out "hey lady, where do you want it" ala some moving guy. What a cad.
47 posted on 01/25/2014 8:22:04 PM PST by andyk (I have sworn...eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.)
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To: Darren McCarty
The proofs section.

Word.
48 posted on 01/25/2014 8:25:32 PM PST by andyk (I have sworn...eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.)
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To: Paladin2
Almost like being a lawyer, but way less sleazy.

Hehe, lulz.
49 posted on 01/25/2014 8:26:23 PM PST by andyk (I have sworn...eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

I took algebra I and II as a correspondence course when I was in the Army and I got straight A’s. I did not find the math that difficult.


50 posted on 01/25/2014 8:31:30 PM PST by orinoco (Orinoco)
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