From Board Member Arlene Silveira…

As one of the Superintendent’s goals for this year, the Board assigned a math goal. Responding to community concerns with our math programs, we put together the goal listed below. At the BOE meeting Monday night, the math task force will be introduced. The BOE has to approve the task force. The project kicks off tomorrow night. We will be asked to give advice on specific research questions that will help address the charge statement of the goal. If you have any specific questions/concerns you would like to be considered, please let me know. You can post your responses on this site.

Thank you.

Arlene Silveira


Initiate and complete a comprehensive, independent and neutral review and assessment of the District’s K-12 math curriculum.

* The review and assessment shall be undertaken by a task force whose members are appointed by the Superintendent and approved by the BOE. Members of the task force shall have math and math education expertise and represent a variety of perspectives regarding math education.

* The task force shall prepare and present to the BOE a preliminary outline of the review and assessment to be undertaken by the task force. The outline shall, at a minimum, include: 1) analysis of math achievement data for MMSD K-12 students, including analysis of all math sub-tests scores disaggregated by student characteristics and schools; 2) analysis of performance expectations for MMSD K-12 students; 3) an overview of math curricula, including MMSD’s math curriculum; 4) a discussion of how to improve MMSD student achievement, 5) recommendations on measures to evaluate the effectiveness of MMSD’s math curriculum. The task force is to present the preliminary outline and a timeline to the BOE for comment and approval.

* The task force is to prepare a written draft of the review and assessment, consistent with the approved preliminary outline. The draft is to be presented to the BOE for review and comments.

* The task force is to prepare the final report on the review and assessment.


Filed under AMPS, Best Practices, Local News


  1. Jerry Eykholt

    The scope of work sound very logical, I’m ashamed to say. What’s going on? Why don’t we see math as beautiful, mysterious, organic, and passionate? I’ll tell you why – it’s because we aren’t asking our students to develop a passionate mission that drives their learning in math.

    Let’s talk about literacy and mastery, yes. But, let’s also have some real connections in place, too. Let’s consider an alternative starting paragraph:

    The adminsitration and board of education is responding great community, national, and worldwide NEEDS for a much larger and diverse team of learners to master mathematics, establish and produce efficient analytical and numerical methods for complex, multivariate, and dynamic problems, and to simply think more creatively. Every student, is needed, in some way, to grow profoundly from his or her mathematical training. Future skillsets and computational methods will likely vary from ones we have today, and our students must not only learn great methods from an astounding mathematical tradition, but also be able to create and adapt to new ones. Meeting these grand challenges will be very rewarding and even fun for our community. Missing these opportunities can only exascerbate the magnitude of new challenges facing our society.

    Said differently, wouldn’t you like a more passionate scope of work behind such an important task force?

    The rest shall follow logically and from our passions!

    – Jerry

  2. Ed Blume

    Has the super released the names of the people he intends to appoint?

  3. Arlene Silveira

    Below are the memebers of the math task force.

    Merle Price (co-chair): an adjunct faculty member in education policy at Cal State University, Northridge. A former high school principal and deputy superintendendt for Los Angeles Unifed School District.

    Jim Lewis (co-chair): professor of mathematics at University of Nebraska, Lincoln. Was department for 15 years and has numerous NSF grants, including funding to improve mathematics education.

    Neither co-chair has been directly involved in NCTN-based curricula implementation, in the interest of impartiality.

    Other members:

    Norman Webb, mathematics educator and evaluator
    Martha Alibali, cognitive scientist
    David Griffeath, mathematician
    Eric Knuth, math education researcher
    Mitchell Nathan, cognitive scientist
    Ken Zeichner, university teacher education expert
    A K-12 teacher and a parent are still to be named.

    No MMSD employee is on the task force, in the interest of impartiality. Lisa Wachtel and Brian S. will serve as point people for the task force if information or data is needed for the district.

    The Board will be responsible for setting the direction of the task force and making decisions on “branch points” in the process. The community will be involved.

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