by Anna Manning
John Locke Foundation’s Terry Stoops was featured in The Daily Tarheel for comments on North Carolina’s math standards. The Daily Tarheel reported that the Thomas B. Fordham Institute rated North Carolina’s mathematic’s curriculum as “weak”.
The report stated North Carolina’s standards were overall focused and coherent, but there were problems with rigor, including limitations on arithmetic in the early grades, which the report called counterproductive. The report also stated some standards were worded vaguely, and they appeared inaccessible because of their scattered presentation and the absence of information regarding the progression of practice standards.
Terry Stoops, Director of Education Studies at the John Locke Foundation, a Raleigh-based conservative think tank, commented on the pitfalls of current math education standards.
“Especially in regard to our math standards, we have a long way to go at the state to having standards that teachers can effectively use to improve student achievement,” Stoops said. “The state has a responsibility to create standards that are clear to all stakeholders: teachers, administrators and parents — particularly if there’s an expectation that parents are meant to assist their children in school — and we should have standards that they can easily understand, that they can easily implement in their own household.”
Stoops also spoke to quality of the recent standard revisions.
“North Carolina’s recent revision of state standards actually didn’t make a lot of individual standards clearer than they were when we originally adopted,” Stoops said. “But I don’t think that they actually improved the rigor of standards, and that’s really what we should be concerned about — that the rigor remains mediocre at best.”
Read the rest of the Daily Tarheel report here.