Ontario's Math Problem
In 2004, Premier Dalton McGuinty announced major policy and curriculum changes in an attempt to fix a broken education system. For example, for the previous five years before he took power, EQAO testing revealed that students had been receiving math marks between 46-54%.
We fast forward 14 years to 2018 and reading and writing scores are better. However, for the past two years the provincial standard for math has been around 50% for Grade 6 students. What is even more disturbing is that the percentage of students who met the math standard on Grade 3 EQAO testing did not do so in Grade 6. This suggests that students in the lower grades are not being prepared to handle more difficult math concepts.
Critics of the current math system in place admit that if not for the private tutoring industry, these marks would probably be significantly lower. The problem is that not everyone can afford tutoring, so it means that some will get the help and others will not. The biggest problem though is that no one is really addressing the problem.
While some strategies were put in place in September 2017, our students are still struggling. As Wilfrid Laurier professor Donna Kotsopolous said, teachers need to get back to teaching math basics. "If students practise math, and learn things like multiplication tables, they will better understand math...The way fractions are being done in Ontario, it's being skimmed over, the topics are left too late...If students don't get that extra help in elementary school, once they hit Grade 9, they find it a huge challenge."
With math being cumulative in nature, students cannot successfully learn new math topics that rely on topics that have not yet been mastered. That's why is so important to get math right when children are young.
With Premier Doug Ford spending time and energy on tackling the "sex education curriculum," it doesn't seem likely that anyone is going to be solving Ontario's math problem any time soon.
4/9/2020 05:22:31 am
I guess, it is not only Ontario is a city that is suffering on math problems but all nations do. When I was a kid, I wouldn’t feel so alone just because I am left out because there’s a lot of us who are not even good at math. Of course, it is really frustrating that’s why the educational system must be addressed the right way so that children’s performance on mathematics will be good!
10/14/2022 06:06:22 am
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11/19/2022 03:25:52 pm
Things like multiplication tables, they will better understand math.The way fractions are being done in Ontario, it's being skimmed over, Thank you for sharing your great post!
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