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ERIC Number: EJ1085825
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jul
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: EISSN-2151-2612
The Collective Black and "Principles to Actions"
Martin, Danny Bernard
Journal of Urban Mathematics Education, v8 n1 p17-23 Jul 2015
In this commentary, Danny Martin describes five key take-aways and two sets of questions that arose from his reading of "Principles to Actions: Ensuring Mathematics Success for All (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics [NCTM], 2014). Martin begins by noting that "Principles to Actions" is clearly a political document that advances particular views and visions of mathematics teaching and learning and per the copyright page of the document, represents the "official position of the National Council of Mathematics Teachers as approved by the NCTM Board of Directors." Martin goes on to touch upon the tone of the document and notes that it reflects a deep and unequivocal commitment to the Common Core by NCTM even as it seems that elements of the Common Core movement are starting to unravel (see, e.g., Kirp, 2014; Ravitch, n.d.). Further, he states that reflected in the Common Core position statement and the essential elements of "Principles to Actions" is the continued focus on equity and the rhetoric of "Mathematics for All" (Martin, 2003, 2011) that was expressed in NCTM's 1989 "Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics" and 2000 "Principles and Standard for School Mathematics." Martin's final take-away from "Principles to Actions" focuses on NCTM's framing of the obstacles that could hinder their vision for mathematics teaching and learning. He states that these obstacles are framed in terms of unproductive beliefs on the part of stakeholders. Based on his reading of "Principles to Actions" as a political document and considering NCTM's equity advocacy, the following sets of questions emerged and are considered in the remainder of the commentary: Who is this document written for? Who are the primary audiences? Beyond any surface level considerations and possibilities, who is this document "really" written for? Secondly, what are the underlying appeals that are being made to these primary audiences? What are the politics associated with these appeals? [This commentary is a revised version of remarks made at the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Research Conference plenary session "Turning the Common Core into Reality in Every Math Classroom," delivered on April 15, 2015 in Boston, MA.]
Journal of Urban Mathematics Education. Georgia State University, College of Education and Human Development, MSE, 30 Pryor Street Suite 600, Atlanta, GA 30303. Tel: 404-413-8409; Fax: 404-413-8063; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A