ERIC Number: EJ825096
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jan
Reference Count: 1
Over Their Heads, out of Their League
Bracey, Gerald W.
Principal Leadership, v9 n5 p56-58 Jan 2009
It is argued that algebra is a gateway to a rich high school curriculum and later success at a four-year college. Therefore, everyone should take algebra and take it as early as possible. In this article, the author contends that it is a fallacious argument that infers causation from correlation. He believes that the kids who take algebra early and are successful are selected by teachers and counselors who think they can handle it. It is a selection process, not a gateway. The author agrees with Loveless' suggestion that the right goal for improving the situation is to: (1) Focus on learning, not on course taking; (2) Teach and assess prerequisite taking; and (3) Collect data and conduct research to support such decisions.
Descriptors: Secondary School Mathematics, Mathematics Achievement, Algebra, Secondary School Curriculum, Mathematics Skills, Mathematics Instruction, State Standards, Low Achievement, At Risk Students
National Association of Secondary School Principals. 1904 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1537. Tel: 800-253-7746; Tel: 703-860-0200; Fax: 703-620-6534; Web site: http://www.principals.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Grade 8; Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A