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Vorderman Mathematics Task Force - Update

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by DM, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. Oh sara, please do come to ATM conference where I will introduce you to many who are 'out of the classroom' who will totally inspire you and reassure you that there are justifiable reasons not to be on the front line.
    My concerns realate to those who are neither on the front line nor are part of this active wider professional community.
  2. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    From your CV I don't think you've been on the "front line" for a while. Nor were you there for very long.
  3. This wider professional community extends throughout all the
    organisations represented at BCME and of course beyond that through
    I was personally inspired by the quality, depth and fluidity of the conversation at the Westminster Educational Discussion Forum.
    As I work on the international discussion forums the
    level of respect given to key academics in mathematics education in the
    UK, including one who currently sits on ACME, is very impressive.
    Other countries are planning for the future. They are planning for there to be substantial gains in student progress compared with previous years.

    Anyway, back on the theme of this thread.
    It seems the only person Michael Gove is listening to regarding secondary mathematics education is Mr Porkess.
    Why? How has this happened?
  4. Weebecka's CV
  5. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Nothing in this world is perfect but blanket statements are usually wet.
  6. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Is that the latest one? Have you updated it to include "facilitator" on TES or is it more truthful? Does it just say "wind up merchant?"
    You do make me laugh,[​IMG]
  7. curlygirly, please do try to stick to the topic(s) this thread is attempting to discuss:
    • how/when/why maths curricula and qualifications will be reformed
    • who is involved in doing it
    Thank you.
  8. Vince_Ulam, I'll resist the temptation to list your own jejune statements.

    To get back to the plot (as I understood it), a poster was questioning how desirable or otherwise it was for Roger, who had opposed a policy statement that had been agreed by ACME to seemingly be the sole voice to which Mr. Gove is listening. The issue was further raised of Roger's impartiality. I personally haven't formed a view either way but I would be interested to hear the views of others.

  9. 110. Just another tag due to yet another post disappearing from this thread.
  10. googolplex

    googolplex Occasional commenter

    Like so many things in life, I think some people are worrying about problems which don't exist. Think of it this way. Gove wants to do away with modules. RP apparently wants to retain all six. RP may well have access to Gove's in tray. Is Gove actually paying any attention....!?
    Personally, I'm quite pleased he is being listened to, since the prospect of going back to terminal exams at A-level will reverse significant improvements to the uptake of A-level maths. Yes, there are big problems at the top end - that's another issue ( the government can't stop tinkering with the grades.).

  11. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    I think you hit the nail on the head there. The government can't stop tinkering. Full stop.
    Nothing is allowed any time to settle down and embed for a few years.
  12. DM

    DM New commenter

    I could list the arguments in favour of retaining the status quo (there are many) but can't really be bothered as the preferred new direction of our political masters is linear. End of.
  13. DM

    DM New commenter

    At the QCDA A Level review (now binned) one of the stated reasons for holding the review was that specifications had been in place for six years so change was necessary as "standing still is the same as going backwards"!
  14. DM do you understand how rapidly curricula are progressing in other countries? In many other countries there is an assumption that what's currently 16-18 will soon be 14-16. In the US calculus dropped from the former age group to the latter. Now of course that's caused huge problems because many teachers were not prepared for it. But I think the QCDA statement has some truth in it. Certainly here in HE we're assuming teaching needs to be of a much higher standard in the future.

    But please don't take that as being a plea for tinkering. Quite the opposite. The drivers of change should come from the education community - not from government - as they do in Scotland. Government tinkering strangles relevant and appropriate change as there is a limit to the amount of change schools can cope with.

    The NCETM has been particularly effective in raising the professional standards of mathematics teachers both in terms of their teaching skills and in terms of improving their abilities to participate in wider discussions regarding mathematics education.
  15. DM

    DM New commenter

    Has it? I fear the reality is that the vast majority of mathematics teachers in the country are completely unware of its existence.
  16. I had heard of NCTEM because I tend to try and keep up with things, ACME et al were all new to me until this thread. I think DM has a valid point in that from a practical point of view, despite best intentions, NCTEM has been largely ineffectual. Queue vince_ulam with some more links and brickbats...
  17. Can you provided data to support that DM? My impression is that most secondary mathematics teachers are aware of it while most primary teachers are not - although of course the Mast trained teachers are.
    Of course it has had a huge challenge on its hands because in many ways mathematics teachers have been so systematically deprofessionalised for years. Much was lost when we stopped discussing and deciding our own curricula, developing our own exam courses and developing our own externally moderated schemes of assessment. Most current secondary mathematics teachers now do not have that experience.
  18. DM

    DM New commenter

    I don't want to rubbish their work. If you want figures, you could always make a freedom of information request.
  19. I've met Roger a few times and had various discussions on Maths education with him. He is eminently knowledgeable and whilst I wouldn't find myself agreeing with everything he says on every maths education matter I can think of many worse people to 'have the ear' of the government.

    Now, of course, it would be unwise of any politician to base decisions on the thoughts of 1 person (no matter who they are and how experienced they are). I would hope that Mr Gove listens to a wider collection of people. Of course it's not Mr Porkess' fault if Mr Gove doesn't!
  20. Many thanks for the reply MathsHOD. I agree totally that it would be unwise to base decisions on the thoughts of one person, though given several 'on the fly' decisions the coalition have made I wouldn't be entirely surprised!

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