Public schools

In the Name of Equity, California Will Discourage Students Who Are Gifted at Math

The new framework aims to keep everyone learning at the same level for as long as possible.


California's Department of Education is working on a new framework for K-12 mathematics that discourages gifted students from enrolling in accelerated classes that study advanced concepts like calculus.

The draft of the framework is hundreds of pages long and covers a wide range of topics. But its overriding concern is inequity. The department is worried that too many students are sorted into different math tracks based on their natural abilities, which leads some to take calculus by their senior year of high school while others don't make it past basic algebra. The department's solution is to prohibit any sorting until high school, keeping gifted kids in the same classrooms as their less mathematically inclined peers until at least grade nine.

"The inequity of mathematics tracking in California can be undone through a coordinated approach in grades 6–12," reads a January 2021 draft of the framework. "In summary, middle-school students are best served in heterogeneous classes."

In fact, the framework concludes that calculus is overvalued, even for gifted students.

"The push to calculus in grade twelve is itself misguided," says the framework.

As evidence for this claim, the framework cites the fact that many students who take calculus end up having to retake it in college anyway. Of course, de-prioritizing instruction in high school calculus would not really solve this problem—and in fact would likely make it worse—but the department does not seem overly worried. The framework's overriding perspective is that teaching the tough stuff is college's problem: The K-12 system should concern itself with making every kid fall in love with math.

Broadly speaking, this entails making math as easy and un-math-like as possible. Math is really about language and culture and social justice, and no one is naturally better at it than anyone else, according to the framework.

"All students deserve powerful mathematics; we reject ideas of natural gifts and talents," reads a bulletpoint in chapter one of the framework. "The belief that 'I treat everyone the same' is insufficient: Active efforts in mathematics teaching are required in order to counter the cultural forces that have led to and continue to perpetuate current inequities."

The entire second chapter of the framework is about connecting math to social justice concepts like bias and racism: "Teachers can support discussions that center mathematical reasoning rather than issues of status and bias by intentionally defining what it means to do and learn mathematics together in ways that include and highlight the languages, identities, and practices of historically marginalized communities." Teachers should also think creatively about what math even entails: "To encourage truly equitable and engaging mathematics classrooms we need to broaden perceptions of mathematics beyond methods and answers so that students come to view mathematics as a connected, multi-dimensional subject that is about sense making and reasoning, to which they can contribute and belong."

This approach is very bad. Contrary to what this guidance seems to suggest, math is not the end-all and be-all—and it's certainly not something that all kids are equally capable of learning and enjoying. Some young people clearly excel at math, even at very early ages. Many schools offer advanced mathematics to a select group of students well before the high school level so that they can take calculus by their junior or senior year. It's done this way for a reason: The students who like math (usually a minority) should have the opportunity to move on as rapidly as possible.

For everyone else… well, advanced math just isn't that important. It would be preferable for schools to offer students more choices, and offer them as early as possible. Teens who are eager readers should be able to study literature instead of math; young people who aren't particularly adept at any academic discipline might pick up art, music, computers, or even trade skills. (Coding doesn't need to be mandatory, but it could be an option.)

The essence of good schooling is choice. Individual kids benefit from a wide range of possible educational options. Permitting them to diversify, specialize, and chart their own paths—with helpful input from the adults in their lives—is the course of action that recognizes vast differences in interest and ability. Holding back kids who are gifted at math isn't equitable: On the contrary, it's extremely unfair to everyone.

Yet the framework seems to reject the notion that some kids are more gifted than others. "An important goal of this framework is to replace ideas of innate mathematics 'talent' and 'giftedness' with the recognition that every student is on a growth pathway," it states. "There is no cutoff determining when one child is 'gifted' and another is not." But cutoffs are exactly what testing and grading systems produce, and it's absurdly naive to think there's nothing innate about such outcomes, given that intelligence is at least partly an inherited trait.

If California adopts this framework, which is currently under public review, the state will end up sabotaging its brightest students. The government should let kids opt out of math if it's not for them. Don't let the false idea that there's no such thing as a gifted student herald the end of advanced math entirely.

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    1. This was my first reaction. My second reaction was 'what does that word salad even mean?'

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      2. Liberals- we believe in science unless it hurts feelings!

        Isn't this just communism? No one is special. No one has special talents. Will this carryover to sports? Every field?

        I am great at Math (Physics and Space Science MS). I suck at English comp and art. We all have talents. It doesn't depend on race. It does in part depend on how hard you work..Tony !

        1. I teach math at a couple of junior colleges in southern California. I spent half my career in various software development jobs. Several points:
          Most people will never use calculus or anything but simple math. I never used much calculus, a lot of linear algebra in database programming. Outside of engineering, or marketing (determining optimal price), one doesn't usually use calculus. Most jobs use little math or the math is embedded in the software programmed in by someone like me.

          Students should be taught mathematics of finance and insurance. It would be much more useful in planning one's personal life and finances - mortgages, understanding insurance health insurance, personal financial planning, etc.

          Instead of keeping smart kids in high school, middle school or junior high school math, let them go straight to freshman & junior college mathematics - calculus, statistics, and whatever prerequisites. By 8th grade most students could take all the prerequisites for lower-division (freshman & sophomore) college calculus. There's no reason why they can't take college courses in 8th or 9th grade. Many of not most of the courses taught in freshman & sophomore year are remedial math courses as prerequisites for college level courses. Let the middle, junior high and high school students take those courses on college campuses.

          If this ever hits the junior colleges at which I work, it should be great entertainment watching the SJWs go up against the math establishment which contains a LOT of immigrants (mainly Asian including Indian, and middle eastern as well as Hispanic).

          Life is a tragedy for the man who feels, but a comedy for the man who thinks.

          1. In my opinion:
            A proper (and I believe productive, and healthy) attitude is:
            Math [Science, English, Foreign Language use, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Earth Science, History, Law, Mechanical/Civil/Electrical/Biomedical Engineering ..] is all around us.
            Education should be about 'filling in the world', appreciating 'worlds [of human knowledge, and the physical and biological reality all around us]'. Build each individual's understandings up. Don't knock people's interests or current-relative-talents down.
            If schools are concerned about 'separations' between persons because of their many current differences, then: one approach might be to bring different persons together. 1 on 1; its likely that there is a particular 'over-achiever' who relates well, and maybe even have things in common, with a particular 'under-achiever'. Or perhaps in small groups with a mixture of 'levels' have the teacher try to facilitate each explaining 'this is how I currently see this [topic/concept], this is how I currently understand this [topic/concept]'; by each of the students.
            And, maybe first day of class, show a video, of a child learning to ride a bicycle. 'Failing' on Monday, and Tuesday. But when he/she tries again on Thursday, they can almost keep riding. And, by the following Wednesday, they have the most basic of riding skills (for beginners).
            Maybe show the video again every 5? weeks.
            Message: school is about trying to learn; learning may take time; humans typically do eventually learn, even complex skills/ideas/areas of knowledge.

        2. the the us will fall further down the education lists i think soon Afghan school girls will get better education than Californians sorry cant teach you to read as it might upset a lazy person that cant read yet because they want to join a gang and sell drugs no learn white mans schooling i herd a kid in London say this to his friend on the bus


    2. Why no mention that Patrice Cullors wrote the draft?

      1. Did she really? I doubt it... the cde folk have been speaking thusly for 30+ years.

    3. Smart kids have special needs too, and it is child abuse not to teach them in accordance with those needs.

      1. Teachers aren't worried and really don't care if 'smart kids' don't get their needs met... possibly because they've been resentful of them since they were kids.

        1. Teachers overall have the lowest SAT's of any profession, and they are personally (more often than not) uncaring about anything but their raises and power.

          1. That's why they get them for this position, they have no qualms chucking the kids in to the proverbial oven...

    4. The really damaging part is that by holding back the most gifted students, we prevent the true geniuses who would move civilization forward from materializing. Some of those kids being held down could have grown up to be the adults that made the breakthroughs that allow humans to colonize the moon or travel to Mars. Instead those gifted children will be squandered and civilization will stagnate when prosperity was possible.

      1. Not a mystery. THEY are the ones who benefit from "things-as-they-are".

        Why would they want some smart asshole making things better? It might cost them some wealth power or privilege.

      2. No
        It’s just that the genius kids will be nurtured in the Chinese schools.
        In China
        Or the Israeli, Singapore and Chilean schools.
        Or even in American private schools.
        Anywhere that rewards talent and hard work and ignores theories of “equity”

    5. I would say that everyone is equally stupid and inane, but clearly these Framers are a special kind of stupid.

    6. California had a public zoom today about the math framework.

      "The public comments lasted over an hour and a half and were overwhelmingly negative/against the framework. Despite this, I believe the state is going to continue moving ahead with this framework. As one parent commentator mentioned, parent input has been mostly an afterthought. We need a more organized response. "

      Imagine if kids were told that all kids must run at the speed of the slowest runner

  1. The Dems are the radical and radically dumb party This is pathetic. I guess they are trying to dumb everyone down so they will vote Democrat when old enough to vote.

    1. this is the movie Idiocracy in action. they would never allow this in sports. If a person is capable let them advance.

      1. Wait, what? You mean not everyone will make varsity in every sport? That's irequitably disfairer!

      2. More like Harrison Bergeron.

      3. They will when I sue because my 5' 1" 100 pound child didn't make the football team because of the discriminatory concept of "athletic ability."

    2. And I really, really want to drive across a bridge designed by someone who wasn't allowed to learn math. Or fly in that next-generation airplane. Or take a vaccine. Or . . .
      But not to worry - the rest of the world pretty much universally recognizes talent and ability, so there will always be a Chinese- or Japanese- or German-designed whatever. And American kids, and before long, American adults, will know exactly how to feel about that, because some SJW will have told them how to feel about it.

      1. Equity means that sometimes the people who can't understand the math and physics involved should get to design bridges, or skyscrapers, or passenger jets. The resulting body counts would simply be the cost of justice...

        1. The body counts will be karma.

      2. There will also be the kids of the Nomenklatura, who will go to private schools, and not be held back by the hoi polloi.

        Democrats, and RINOs are united in their desire to restore an aristocracy.

        1. Don't act like Trump didn't entertain the idea of a new aristocracy. While in power, he surrounded himself with his children, his closest confidants, and their children. That guy would have happily handed power off to one of them after leaving the white house. Trump is no different than the RINOs and libs you're calling out.

          1. BOTH SIDES!!!!!!!!

          2. Dumb vs. Blue should be your name, as you prove it by lying ,providing zero proof and just being plain stupid...and I don't even like Trump!

          3. I don't know. I wonder who would do better on a calculus test - Trump, Hillary, Biden or Barack.

      3. SJW = s* Jack Wagon?

        1. I looked it up, Social Justice Warrior, so I was about 99.9% correct in my initial guess, or, in line with California, correct

    3. Interestingly, Russian communists took an absolutely opposite approach. Huge efforts were done to locate math-gifted students early, there were nation-wide math competitions each year. (Winners were treated like American football players by girls). Math-by-mail program was driven by Moscow University, free - and you could get calculus there like 2 years earlier than everyone else.

      What gives? Probably - international competition. As I discovered USA underwent huge math and science attitude reassessment when Sputnik was launched.

      1. Yeah, but then those people went on the become engineers, mathematicians, and such.

        Then they learned the primary pay was bad, and there were no opportunities for secondary income.

  2. Haha, now in addition to making everyone equally poor, they'll be equally ignorant.

    Can't have a bunch of smart people able to notice statistical anomalies, now can we.

    1. Welcome to the 'prolification' stage.

      We are in the pre-history part of 1984 - these are the things that lead to permanent totalitarianism.

      Orwell was right, he just got the date wrong. Not 1984 but 2084.

      1. 2084? You're working way too far out.

        1. Oh, it takes a while to make everyone forget about all of history.

      2. I think 2001 was the year it should have been. 2084??? We will have evolved to a new species of automatons by then.

        1. In 2084, will L.A. 12th graders still be able to count to 1984?

    2. It is the wisdom of Homer Simpson at its best - 'You failed miserably, so don't try.'
      My father said it first - aim for the bottom and you will never fail.

    3. This just makes it so that everyone can be "above average", since no one will know the math to question those statistics. And since everyone is "above average", they'll then complain that anything they can't do must be too hard because they can't do it. Further dumbing down the educational standards.

    4. That's precisely the goal of today's Democratic party. Equality of outcome is the sacrament of their religion, and it is carried out by dragging everyone down to the lowest level.

      1. It's always been easier to ensure equality in a state of misery than in one of prosperity. Anyone can manage to become cold, broke, and starving but it takes some successful creations to make anyone prosperous, and since that kind of success can't always be guaranteed...

        The leadership class will stay exempt though, since some animals will have been created "more equal" than others...

        1. yeah, the politicians and teachers kids will always be shielded from this crap. Funny how a lot of teachers send their kids to private catholic/christian schools, ever wonder that?

    5. "Math is really about language and culture and social justice"

      Doublespeak at its finest.

      1. It's in the framework, said by a bunch of dumba**es, I would like to have that explained to me like I am a 5 yo. I haven't a clue what that is supposed to mean

  3. Welcome to the Long March on the Institutions.

    1. Here's hoping we have more persistence than Chiang, and eliminate 100% instead of 80-90%.

  4. use the power of your site to object to "equity" being mischaracterized.

    1. Equity is cutting off the feet of the taller men, so they’ll be the same height is everyone else.

  5. We MUST dumb down math until no one can understand the concept of "one man, one vote".

    If CA really wants to get to the lowest common denominator (a math concept by the way), they should lower their state income tax to zero, right?

    1. Wait, you can't put zero in the denominator!

      1. You can if you want to hard enough!

      2. White supremacist. /s

  6. Makes it easy for the homeschooled kids in the future.

    1. It's time to separate education from Government Babysitting. If you want your children to be educated then educate them.
      BTW I was doing calculus in 10th grade public school. Special program. Of the 6 of us, one is a Google bigwig and another is a physicist. It's criminal to deprive people of opportunities like that.

  7. Disgusting. Will probably serve to fuck over the poor, minority students who could have excelled at math or science, but instead were held back by this artificial bullshit.

    1. They are going after Asians. This is like when bars in the south make a "no jerseys and no backward hats" dress code back when I lived there. Clearly designed to discourage black partiers from entering, without explicitly saying "no blacks". Likewise, California is looking to "upstream" the solution of their problem of too many Asians in their universities by forcing Asian students who would normally be beating the pants off of all the other students in science and math down to the same level. Affirmative Action is too vulnerable to court decisions for them to rely on it alone. They need multiple measures to keep the 'correct' median skin tone.

      I say boot out and keep out all students from China. Solve the Chinese academic espionage problem and the over representation of Asians in universities "problem" with one policy.

      1. They won’t get rid of their most lucrative tuition stream. Out of state rates, dorm fees, and paid in cash in advance. No waiting on loan disbursements or payment plans.

        1. Damn. A great idea and then the icewater in the face from reality.

      2. Is there something about black people that requires them to wear jerseys and backwards hats? Or prevents other people from doing the same?

        The bars were simply attempting to create what they saw as a desirable atmosphere - anyone who met the dress code was welcome.

        Unlike what California is doing. Which is seeking to oppress everyone who attends public school. Plenty of Asians will still excel, because their parents will send them to private schools.

      3. As an employer I found those of Asian and Indian descent to be the brightest and most diligent workers. They had strong family based heritages and they were eager to excel in whatever task they were given. I found that the younger generation of Americans seeking full time employment for their first time to have a sense of "job entitlement", as though I owed them a job at my company. I find it quite sad that society has let them down for being hired is a privilege, not an entitlement. I fully understand the requirements of EEOC and we are audited on a frequent basis due to the contracts we are awarded. There is no requirement that prevents me from hiring the most talented for the position available as an engineering based firm.

    2. You say that as if it's not the idea.

      1. I'm done with caring about people's intentions. Whatever the intention behind it is, it's shit.

        1. well said Zeb, well said!

        2. well said Zeb, well said!

    3. Of course it will hurt them just as I can't imagine a more pernicious thing you could do than tell a young person of color that they can't succeed because the system is totally against them. I can't imagine how many just give up when they hear that crap.

  8. Harrison Bergeron was supposed to be a defense of these kinds of efforts, really, but seeing progressives lifting the most ridiculous aspects of the story and making them real, when you read the story now, it makes it seem like the only point is to ridicule "The Handicapper General" and this kind of forcibly "equitable" society.

    "Harrison Bergeron, age fourteen," she said in a grackle squawk, "has just escaped from jail, where he was held on suspicion of plotting to overthrow the government. He is a genius and an athlete, is under-handicapped, and should be regarded as extremely dangerous . . . ."

    . . . to offset his good looks, the H-G men required that he wear at all times a red rubber ball for a nose, keep his eyebrows shaved off, and cover his even white teeth with black caps at snaggle-tooth random.

    "If you see this boy, " said the ballerina, "do not - I repeat, do not - try
    to reason with him."


    This is the society we live in. Achievement is racist, so is talent, reasoning is dangerous, shouldn't be taught--and progressives are America's most horrible people.

    1. I immediately thought of this story too. Vonnegut is rather poignant right now.

    2. This is the society we live in. Achievement is racist, so is talent, reasoning is dangerous, shouldn’t be taught–and progressives are America’s most horrible people.

      They really are the cause of societal rot.

    3. We really need to get rid of the democrats right away. How much more are we going to to take?

      1. Let the Democrats do it to their kids in their districts. You educate your kid well. Your kid will have the advantage over their kids.

    4. This is why I assigned this to my 10 year old to read as part of homeschooling this year. Will have my 7 and 4 year-olds read it in a few years too.

    5. But you're neglecting the other side of the equation - people who are better than me at some things makes me feel bad about myself and that constitutes a microaggression against me. A more equitable society where nobody is better than anybody else at anything promotes harmony rather than discord, eliminating reasons for envy and jealousy is a good thing. Besides, we all know that the idea that knowledge is somehow "better" than ignorance is a relic of white European colonialist thinking and must be eliminated.

      1. Yes, envy and jealousy are bad things and eliminating them will remove any reason for one to work harder and achieve more. Besides the stupid people would have just resorted to crime to get what they want.

      2. if it was true that the brightest kids got funneled into advanced classes in 2nd grade and they just stayed the smartest, this would not be an issue. instead, the privileged kids with money, know of the tests and have parents that push for the tests. these kids are mostly white or asian..they are not actually smarter, but they never have to test again and they just stay in the advanced group. meanwhile, poor kids, often of color, rarely get the opportunity to test into those classes so they just stay behind. I have several teachers in my family, and they a aware that plenty of stupid kids are in the adcanced group, and plenty of very bright kids are kept out and it is many ways that way because of class and race.

        1. This is class struggle bullshit.

          I left home at 14 and worked my way through a boarding school, taking jobs on farms and doing whatever construction work I could find. When I was 16, I took a job in a local saw mill. I wasn't unusual. Everyone in my boarding school had to work for a living because laziness is disgusting and because graduating from high school and not knowing how to work for a living is disgraceful.

          I have so much more respect for an illegal alien gardener, who pushes his kid to do his homework, than I do for a lazy poor-ass piece of shit who doesn't take responsibility for his or her child's education. The real problem is lazy losers living off of government programs like parasites and teaching their own children to be lazy, too.

          In a better world, the lazy people would be forced to work to feed themselves. We live in an upside-down world where the poorest people in our society have the biggest problems with obesity! People wouldn't have so many lazy children if they had to work to take care of them. There is no substitute for parents who teach their children to work hard, and trying to stop hard working, smart kids from being achievers won't change that one bit.

          What's the point of trying to help the poor if they're so lazy, they won't even teach their children to study so they won't be poor? No way the poor are anywhere near as pathetic as you're making them out to be. I've known lots of people whose parents came to this country with nothing and their children are now wealthy. They all had one thing in common: Their parents worked hard and made their children study hard.

          1. You should be more well known. So often right.

          2. When were you born 1900?

        2. "These kids are mostly white or asian..they are not actually smarter, but they never have to test again and they just stay in the advanced group."

          Are you advocating discrimination against people because of their race?

          There's a word for that. It's called "racism".

          1. am saying that the current system is not merit based, even though some imagine it is much more class and race based. We would do well to change it.

            1. Are you actually going to suggest a thoughtful change to the system, or just point out its flaws?

            2. No, it is mostly culture based. Culture is not in governments' control nor should it be. It is what your parents, your neighbor's parents, and your classmate's parents - i.e., your community - value, reward, and expect.

              The stark differences in the percent of children born out of wedlock in the US between Blacks (about 70%), Whites (about 28%), and Asians (about 12%) is telling. I'd bet that if 70% of Asians were born out of wedlock and 12% of Blacks were born out of wedlock, the academic performance of Blacks would rise dramatically and that of Asians would decline dramatically.

              If a culture does not value education, few members of that community will become well educated. The fact is, many Black communities don't value education and that reflects in academic achievement by members of those communities.

              1. Finally someone says what I have been posting, mostly on gun blogs!
                The huge problem is the culture of those in the inner cities.
                BLack people have rejected mainstream American “white” cultural values.
                And embraced “Hood” culture. Or rap/thug/ghetto whatever you want to call the values promoted by Hollywood and music videos of snitches get stitches, hoes, drug use, having lots of children by multiple partners, and glorifying money obtained by crime.

                Nothing will improve until this spiritual sickness is replaced by a culture that values two parents, supporting their children, working hard and valuing education.

            3. There is a lot of variation between states so what state does that because I had several teachers in my family and that is NOT the way they do in the states I'm familiar with.

              1. He probably heard that in his echo chamber and is just blurting it out here.

        3. Bullshit. The only thing youre right about is the parents need to be involved, because the teachers cant be arsed to recognize talent, only ass-kissing. My black parent cared about my education and I was placed in gifted programs and honors classes. I wasnt the only black in the classes either. Furthermore, a student is removed from the program or classes if they fall behind or dont perform.
          I guess I'll also give you that some of the kids are dummies, but the dummy cohort is made up of hard workers and over achievers.

          1. Not where this was supposed to go. It was directed at benevolent racist chip.

        4. Jesus, you poor bastard.

        5. "...I have several teachers in my family,..."

          Is that supposed to make your steaming pile of shit other than what it is?

        6. So the solution to that is to keep the actual smart ones, and everybody else, at a pace retarded by bullshit considerations?
          Do you really think that?

          Might a better solution to the "fairness problem" be periodic testing to swap out the less successful students in the "advanced track" classes with kids who have demonstrated advanced abilities in the standard classes. Might not be easy but it's better than just ensuring that NOBODY in American schools can advance in math.

    6. +10, Yes, California is using to story Harrison Bergeron as an instruction manual.

  9. Today in libertarian news and commentary.

    Joe Biden and the twilight of the ‘fact-checkers’
    Apparently media fact-checkers are no longer needed now that Trump is gone.

    Now that the ‘adults’ are back in charge, and the populist hothead Donald Trump is out of the picture, journalists can afford to put their feet up. Relax – old, reliable Uncle Joe’s got this.

    At least that was the impression the media gave when Joe Biden was elected, and it’s been compounded as the president reaches his first 100 days in office this week.

    The Washington Post – whose masthead proudly bears the slogan ‘democracy dies in darkness’ – has announced it will no longer maintain its fact-checking database of Joe Biden’s claims.

    1. Because it wants democracy to die.

      1. It’s a feature, not a bug.

      2. It should soon read "democracy dies in dumbness."

    2. I have seen a few 'fact-checks' lately. It consisted of fact checking the critics of Biden.

      1. And they'll fact check black people. IF they're Republicans. On the facts of their own lives.

    3. The Washington Post doing it's part to Fortify Our Democracy.

  10. Hell this generation didn't learn it in college. They took basket weaving and gay feminist studies.

  11. So the next generation of engineers and architects, physicists, etc., will have to wait until High School to get the education which is absolutely critical to their career. Instead, they will be stuck with the same curricula they feed the "average" math students, like myself. I had two friends in elementary school who were whizzes at math. One became a very successful architect, had to go to private school to get what he needed. The other after the Navy sent him to school, assigned him to work on programming for nukes (from there he went on to designing cutting-edge hardware and software for pollution-monitoring in heavy industry). And, back then, the public schools were a whole lot better than they are now.

    There are many areas of education where "tracking" is probably not a good idea, but math isn't one of them.

    1. They will all be H1-b visas.

  12. "All students deserve powerful mathematics; we reject ideas of natural gifts and talents,"

    That was written by someone so stupid as to actually believe it.

    1. If only that meant that they intended to raise standards to meet the needs of students deserving powerful mathematics, especially for those not so gifted.
      But you are correct in assessing the mental capacity of the one who wrote that statement. They too, like Barbie, found math was hard.

      I too once found math hard. But hard things become easy things after one applies themselves to the study of a thing.
      Now, if only the coaches had held back the gifted athletes, I might then have had a shot at sports...

      1. My sisters and I all found math hard. However, we excelled at English, spelling, and literature. It ticked my older sister off so bad that she couldn't quickly grasp the math concepts, that she went to the nearest university and received her degree in math education. She now teaches calculus and trig at a private school. You don't necessarily have to be "gifted" to excel at a subject. You just have to be willing to work harder than some.

        1. Yeah, that's true. We can all learn something, whether we have a gift for it or not, but it's going to be harder to learn if you don't have a God given gift for it.

          I was the opposite of your sister, finding math easy, but I had to work very hard to learn to write clearly and succinctly. In my technical career, I found that ability to communicate clearly very helpful in advancing my career, and I remembered (from a fellow high school student who was related to the CEO of the local electric utility) that you didn't need a technical degree to run the electric company because that CEO majored in English.

        2. Mathematics is a language, but like some other languages there do seem to be milestones. Where, if you have not grasped certain concepts by some age, your ability to learn will be impaired if not outright restricted.

          This is somewhat analogous to music and language. Perfect (absolute) pitch is widely considered to be an inborn trait. But it is more prevalent in native (ie. not ethnic) Chinese than in the rest of the world's population. That Mandarin is a tonal language may have some thing to do with this.

    2. I think you're being too kind. This policy of one size fits union is made to help out the lazy members of the teachers unions who have absolutely no clue what to do with children who are far more intelligent than the teachers are. It gives them the out by stating up front that nobody is going to do the extra work to create extra courses, schedules, lesson plans, etc. They're going carbon copy central to: 1) free up budget for salary increases and perks, 2) parents don't complain that their kids aren't being challenged but will note good grades, 3) holding smart kids back improves the average class score making teachers look better than they are, and 4) as noted, it muddies the water at college acceptance time because everyone got the same participation trophy.

      I don't think anybody is so stupid as to actually believe that Richard Feynman, Einstein, or Newton weren't gifted in their intellectual abilities.

      1. I agree TandoDelta. Lately, I've found Reason to be doing more reporting and not explaining or examining the Libertarian position and alternative.

        Here Welch fails to point out that getting government out of schooling would avoid the issue entirely (unless the market, i.e. people, actually want such a policy, in which case a free market would provide that option, and the choice we don't get with government schools). Nor does he point out the harm to society this policy will create, when the next Einstein either drops out or doesn't learn the math to explain the universe and doesn't advance society. He merely says it's "unfair to everyone".

        Without the libertarian position stated, people won't think of it, and it will be excluded from the discussion, because the statists don't ant it.

        1. This is not a recent phenomenon, and has been a pattern for quite some time now.

          Principles only apply in one political direction at Reason.

    3. Anybody who’s ever been to school knows that some kids are naturally smarter than others. If you are unaware of this, it’s probably because you were the dumbest kid in your class. Kind of like not knowing who the sucker at the poker table is.

    4. The crap these folks are pushing is tantamount to child abuse.

  13. And this policy is evil.

  14. Absolutely love it. End math and science!

    Seriously, people retake Calc in college because AP Calc has been dumbed down so much that you are not prepared for Engineering .

    1. No ABET accredited engineering program will credit AP calc. It's intended for liberal arts majors.

      1. And that's not new.

        1. That's not the case. AP Calc AB or BC is expected... but don't mean a thing without the matching test. A 5 does count at top colleges.

      2. Yeah, I had to take college calc classes in high school to get college credit for it. And the highschool thought it was normal for accelerated math students to go from taking calc at high school to calc at the local college... that's just bizarre.

        1. I did not get into AP math in high school though I was straight A's in math since forever. In college, I was so worried that I was behind that I worked extra hard. In my 1st semester college Calculus 1 class I had a fellow student from my HIgh School who had taken the AP calculus class. He struggled in the Calculus 1 class while I got an A. Just an anecdote from my life.

  15. It's funny how Harris's Equity film was all about the helping hand giving a boost to the disadvantaged.

    When it's really about smacking the more capable down hard.

    Harrison Bergeron was not an instruction manual.

    1. It's clearly not enough to just smack someone down. This is more like tying people together in a game of three legged twister.

      Right hand blue, center foot/feet yellow, red hand left, etc.

  16. California truly seems like an awful place to live.

    1. The weather is quite nice in much of the state.

      Other than that, as a lifelong resident (who will be moving out of the state in the not distant future - certainly before RMDs hit), I have to agree.

  17. Growing up, in my middle school, certain students (and their parents, naturally) rebelled when the school attempted to create an advanced math course, claiming the advanced course was "unfair" and would make their children who weren't as talented feel "dumb." These were ironically the same individuals who repeatedly argued (albeit, with some validity) against coaches giving playing time on sports teams to those who were "not as good" because it hurt the team's chances at winning. Sadly, the minority of upset parents won the day, after the school became afraid to continue the project.

    Not everyone has the capacity to excel at everything they attempt to do. Our goal should be to identify those things which students are, in fact, good at, and give them the opportunity and means to thrive at those things (provided, of course, they don't also despite doing them). Otherwise, we are doomed to stifle the progress of society in the name of protecting a few individual person's feelings of inadequacy, which is futile anyway.

    1. And kids need to learn that they aren't going to be great at everything and that that's OK and normal. For pretty much everyone, there are people out there who are way better than you at everything and there are things that you aren't very good at. The sooner people can learn to accept that, the better.

      1. There's also meta-values about rigor, self-discipline, and learning how to learn. Even if you're terrible at calculus, putting forth the effort to get a passing or even good grade equips you for other endeavors, whether you're naturally predisposed to excel or not.

  18. Like Barbie said: Math class is tough. And we don't want the people building our airplanes, or our skyscrapers and bridges or coming up with lifesaving medical treatments to get a head start on the rest of us. It's just not FAIR!

  19. Now not only will the gifted student suffer because they are not receiving the education that government is supposed to give them so is the US as a nation. This at a time when educators are making it easier to graduate out of elementary and high school. This has pushed the US way down the list of educated nations. This is also while then nations such as China who has a plan to replace the US as the most powerful military and economic nation in the world. Our educators are helping these enemies of the US to reach their goal of putting the US down by not fully educating each student to the highest extent each student can achieve. What would make more sense to me would to push each student to their highest ability. This make shorter time for the exceptional student or who has more support at home that other students but it at least would not be holding any student back to the level of the lowest achieving student. If it is necessary the student would be given a packet of information that they were to learn before they could move on to the next level and the sooner they achieved that the sooner they could move to the next packet. This would allow a student to graduate in less time than it might take another student but neither one would be held back or forced to progress faster that they are capable. With computerized learning the government education could do that easy enough. This would mean that students that started at the same time would not necessarily complete all 12 grades in the same time frame. It would allow each student to reach his or her educational top level as soon as that student is capable of.

    1. This at a time when educators are making it easier to graduate out of elementary and high school.

      The lowering of standards at colleges and universities is pretty shocking too. It was bad enough when I graduated 20 years ago.

    2. The below average students will also suffer. When they are in a math class with kids who are math whizzes, the teacher is not going to be able to slow things down for them.

      1. As anybody who excelled at anything in school knows, even if you're quiet, sit in the back, and try not to answer questions; other kids are going to notice when you always seem to have the right answer. Especially if the teacher has to wake you up to get it. To avoid the perception of inequity or microaggression or whatever would require measures that make this idiocy seem passive and harmless.

        Two weeks ago, my 10-yr.-old scored in the 95th %ile on a standardized test. He was laughing when he got home because the test was 11 questions and they were given 90 min. to finish it, he took 18 min. What's he supposed to do? Take 5 tests in the time it takes other kids to do one? Pretend he's taking a test for 70 additional minutes?

        Maybe (wildly optimistically) it would be the end of all-in-one public schooling.

        1. All the top kids in math class in the public school I went to got 5 times the homework as everyone else and figured out pretty quickly that doodling for an hour was way better.

  20. "..we reject ideas of natural gifts and talents,"

    I thing this really gets to the heart of the matter; how can you have, in the most literal sense, "equity," if there are persons more talented than the lowest common denominator? With the overt desire to eliminate any and all disparities, are we seriously going to dumb down everyone in order that no one person feels "left behind?" Is it more important to show no disparities between races, genders, socio economic groups than it is to celebrate achievement and all of the benefits that derive from that?

    I really wish these headlines were from The Onion or Babylon Bee, but Poe is serious here; this is "real life" and, sadly, is not a joke.

    I can only conclude that progressivism is a disease that has been festering for about 100 years, and is rapidly approaching a terminal phase. Either we kill it, or it kills us.

    1. No *we* are not. Only programmed leftist robots will submit to be *dumb downed*. We independent minded people and our children will continue to strive, grow and thrive.

    2. “..we reject ideas of natural gifts and talents,”

      So progressivism embraces the idea that if people work really hard at something, like calculus, and achieve more in life, like a high paying career in medicine or engineering, that the resulting unequal outcome compared to the group that had equal opportunity is just fine?

      Nope. Progs will hate that too.

      1. It is not about equal opportunity; that is so last century. Now it is about equal outcomes.

        As for striving and growing; it comes down to who has the power to manage and control, and I would not doubt for one second the determination of these assholes to accumulate as much of that as possible.

    3. They took Jefferson's "all men are created equal" phrase a bit too literally.

  21. Look at Robby going all Bell Curve on us. If intelligence is hereditary, then some genetically related groups could have more of it than other groups. Not possible!

    1. racial membership isn't a genetic thing, but a social construct. Hereditary traits don't generally align with racial groups particularly well. (You can basically only make any sort of 'racial' genetic claim about small insular ethnic groups, not broadly defined 'races', and even then you can't make particularly strong claims).

      1. racial membership isn’t a genetic thing

        I don't know where you got your medical degree, but you should demand your money back.


        1. "White people don't get sickle cell anemia."
          "Black people don't have blue eyes."
          "Asians don't handle alcohol very well."

          All too narrowly applicable, weak, and genetically unsubstantiated for Squirrelloid.

          1. There are white people with sickle cell anemia:
            "Sickle cell trait is an inherited blood disorder that affects 1 million to 3 million Americans and 8 to 10 percent of African Americans. Sickle cell trait can also affect Hispanics, South Asians, Caucasians from southern Europe, and people from Middle Eastern countries. More than 100 million people worldwide have sickle cell trait."

            There are black people with blue eyes. Google it.

            And I doubt 'Asians don't handle alcohol very well' is universally true. Honestly, I'm not sure what you mean by Asians, since that's not even a unified racial group. But it's not like all caucasians handle alcohol well, either...

            Feel dumb yet?

            1. I suspect the "Asians don't handle alcohol very well" comment is a reference to alcohol flush reaction which affects a much larger percentage of East Asians than, say, Europeans.

        2. "Races" interbreed with each other all the time. Genes get passed around. Assigning people to particular races doesn't necessarily line up with genetics terribly well, either, since it isn't based on genetic criteria. There's more genetic diversity in populations with (relatively recent) sub-saharan ancestry than in the rest of the world combined, yet our social classification calls them all 'black'.

          Race is defined socially based on arbitrary physical characteristics, doesn't account for interbreeding between groups terribly well (which is enough to have seen pretty substantial gene flow), and doesn't consider actual genetic variation in making the assignment. In short, it's not a biological classification.

        3. Look buttholes, youre both right.
          Race isnt real and some ethnic groups have higher IQs than others. Ethnic supergroups are close to races, but trying to combine the supergroups into races doesnt work that well.

          1. Race is obviously real. It is apparent even to nonhuman animals.

        4. John, there is absolutely no way to determine someone's race from a blood sample.

      2. That’s just silly, everywhere on the planet that Europeans settled is more or less a magnet for most other races, no matter where they are. Even happens on as small a scale as a metro area.

        1. Yes, it's silly but the magnet thing is more a matter of making the places they settle less of a shit hole than the warlord controlled alternatives. Then again you could also just look at the median age of the population and be able to pick out the vast majority of shit holes regardless of race.

        2. Surely you aren't implying that cultural institutions are hereditary.

        3. "... everywhere on the planet that Europeans settled..."

          Not really. At least not when you consider places the Belgians, Italians, or Portuguese settled.

          What you really mean are places settled by English speaking peoples.

    2. Indeed I think this is the connection Robby wants us to infer. The anti-racists know that the only way to abolish racial inequity is to abolish the standards. There is no such thing as right or wrong in math. Two plus two equals five.

  22. I have said this before but advanced classes literally saved my life I in all likelihood would've killed myself from boredom if I wasn't in advanced classes in high school.

    1. I wouldn't go that far, but the Honors track courses that started in 7th grade probably saved the sanity of several teachers. That was too late for my 6th grade teacher, who was institutionalized at the end of the school year. I cannot claim sole credit for that; there were four other exceptionally bright students out of 35 in that class, and two of them were (like me) hyperactive and/or autistic boys, and relieved their boredom by torturing the teacher...

      1. NIce. You acted like a shithead cause you're so smaaaaart.

  23. I can see it now kids arrested for having an after school math club. it will be called a racist event and all will be suspended from school.

  24. My suggestion on modifying the curriculum: every parent, student, and teacher should read Vonnegut's "Harrison Bergeron" (
    I'd suggest Democratic politicians and administrators read it as well, but they'd take it as a template for governing, rather than a cautionary tale.

  25. Only the Looney Left would try to solve inequity by enforcing inequity.

    1. Some people were too tall, so we cut their legs off until everyone was the same height.

      1. And then someone cut one leg to short so they had to do everyone again.

  26. Education choice now, education choice tomorrow, education choice forever!

  27. "The push to calculus in grade twelve is itself misguided," says the framework."

    Just today I visited Wharton's admission page which specified that they prefer to see advanced math *especially calculus." Guess that will ease some of the competition.

    1. When darling daughter was looking at colleges, we attended an event where the Stanford dean of admissions was asked whether it was better to take standard rigor classes and get straight A's or take AP classes and get the occasional B. He chuckled and said they expect their applicants to score straight A's having taken AP classes.

      Stanford and Wharton would seem perfectly aligned...

      1. Many of those schools want to see four years of a foreign language in addition to AP calc.

        Which is mostly impossible at your average public high school.

  28. "The push to calculus in grade twelve is itself misguided," says the framework.

    Fourty years ago calculus in the senior year was for the average college prep student at an ordinary public district. Should one be thinking of a STEM career now, you might do well to have begun calculus in your junior year, so that higher level physics, and statistics and modeling classes that utilize calculus can be done in your senior year.

    The handicapper general has come for the california public schools. Next the general will have to reign in the private school and home school kids from learning too much.

    1. " that higher level physics, and statistics and modeling classes that utilize calculus can be done in your senior year."

      About the only way you can do these now is through dual enrollment at a nearby university.

  29. Participation Trophy America marches on...

  30. You can socially pass students in liberal arts classes where feelingz matter. If they provide the correct paradigm in the answer, their marks can be decent. But in math, a student's work is usually correct or incorrect. And here we have a skirmish against that.
    These may be our future doctors, engineers and scientists. And California is attempting to hold them back.
    Something similar occurred in history: the railway lines of the Austro-Hungarian Empire during the Great War. Based on numerous factors, the routes had different max safe speeds (like today’s roads). And the empire mandated that ALL railways operate at the slowest railway’s safe speed. How did Austria-Hungary perform during a war where mobilizing troops and materiel was a component of victory?

  31. "The push to calculus in grade twelve is itself misguided," says the framework.

    "We have no fucking idea what calculus is about," say the framework authors.

  32. Handicapper in practice! Don't you just love it?

  33. Willingly sending our children to government schools is child abuse.

    They are the pediatric clinics of the Handicapper General.

  34. "The students who like math (usually a minority) should have the opportunity to move on as rapidly as possible."

    Isn't that also true of students who like science, ballet, languages, music, fencing, horticulture, sketching, computing, animal husbandry, chess, or any other field of human activity? I like the idea of public schools providing a broad exposure to the basics to everyone. The students should also be encouraged to pursue special interests on their own dime.

    1. It should be that way.
      They should also teach more basic life skills.
      The austrian derived school system is pretty terrible.

  35. There's another practical aspect I haven't seen mentioned yet - college credit for qualifying high school classes. I had at least 6 transferable math credits when I entered freshman year in college. The cost in high school was something like 10% of the equivalent in college. With 6 math and 6 English credits before my first university class, I was a semester ahead and saved that much tuition before even setting foot on a college campus, knocking out some core degree requirements. That's some real shit for normal people.

    1. But, but saving enough on college costs to be able to pay your own way would remove you from the constituency for the next entitlement of college loan forgiveness.

  36. If this goes through, will CA’s students be less capable in math? You can count on that!

  37. California has jumped the shark. Don't forget to turn the lights off on your way out.

  38. Lefturds hate math, because their harebrained schemes don't add up.


    1. That's an insult to hares.

    2. Hmmm...yes, there might be something to that.

  39. It’s the only way to guarantee equality.

  40. There was a time when the inteligencia weren’t so delusional that I thought they could be enlightened, now it’s gone so far I just sit back and watch what’s going on as entertainment. History has shown us humanity’s always been more or less crazy, why waste your time sitting on the Engel of a cliff convincing the herd to not stampede over it? You just make yourself as dumb as them!

    1. Yep. Our only hope at this point is for the "academics" to suddenly grow an urge to subvert their own subversion and undo all of this in the name of even further transgressing boundaries and the ultimate nihilism.

  41. The belief that 'I treat everyone the same' is insufficient

    Of course it is. The goal is from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs. Those who are naturally gifted at math will learn regardless, so we must always focus on those that need help.

    It is refreshing when they approach Marxism directly instead of beating around the bush.

  42. It won't matter much. Our schools in Cali suck anyways. If it wasn't for Alabama we would be last.

  43. Harrison Bergeron, is that you?

  44. So the Cali BOE is concerned with marginalized communities, eh? Not many groups more marginalized than the kids who take calculus in high school...

  45. For those interested, I encourage you to read the book Mathematical Mindsets by Dr. Jo Boaler from Stanford. Our system of education has created a myth that some are born with a mathematical mindset and others are not. Her work, grounded in brain research, debunks this myth. The shifts California is initiating will require significant improvements to what teaching and learning looks and sounds like in their classrooms. For currently higher achieving students to continue to grow as learners, they will need to be challenged with open ended rigorous tasks. These same types of tasks can be accessed by students who are currently functioning at lower skill levels. Dr. Boaler calls these "low floor high ceiling" tasks. Check out her site at for examples of these types of tasks and much more. I am an elementary school principal who for many years thought I was NOT a "math person". I now know that is nonsense. Anyone can improve their math thinking provided that are supported to believe they can.

    1. I'm sorry but that is total bullshit. Believe me..i had to take advanced physics for my degree and when you get to say Statistical Thermodynamics or Quantum Mechanics there just were fellow students who were gifted, blessed, natural ability whatever you then the rest of us who were good at math but not on their level... only an "education" expert who say something like this...

    2. Boaler was a psych major in college and doesn't have the math background to take undergraduate physics. She sells snake oils by the seashore.

  46. In 6th grade, in Mountain View, CalifornEye-Ay ( this would be the 1978-79 school year) they introduced a program called MGM —now that’s “Mentally Gifted Minors”—and a couple of days a week those selected for MGM (including many of my friends) left our class in the afternoon for the MGM gathering. I myself was among those “left behind” so to speak. Did we “left-behinds” resent it? Sure. (I was just a math-deficient under achiever quite good at grammar/writing and history) It didn’t help that my MGM friends all sighed and looked at me piteously as they intoned: “We’re NOT supposed to tell you,” in response to my queries about what precisely went on in them thar MGM powwows. But after reading THIS all I can do is sigh and think to myself: “Those were the days my friend....”

  47. I notice from the picture that the person of color has to wear headphones to drown out the whining of the right handed white person. What the article fails to address is that the POC is left-handed, and until half the country is left-handed, instead of only 10%, we can never have equity.

    From Scientific American:
    Left-handers' brains are structured differently from right-handers' in ways that can allow them to process language, spatial relations and emotions in more diverse and potentially creative ways. Similarly, studies of adolescents who took tests to assess mathematical giftedness found many more left-handers in the population.

    1. Hey wait....I’M a southpaw! Is THAT why I was left behind vis-a-vis MGM???? Why, I’ll sue!!! (Did I mention I’ve spent my entire life in Mountain View?)

      1. California....(I currently live next door in Sunnyvale m. We get confused round these here parts)

  48. No Boat Anchor Left Behind

  49. these stories are not really what they appear to be. The reality is often that privileged rich kids mostly white, get set aside at an early age in elementary school as gifted, when they really are just more advantaged. They then get taught in isolation with other gifted kids year after year after year, Even though their intellect and work ethic don't necessarily justify it. Other kids typically poor kids of color don't get to take advantage of this special schooling, and because of the way math works they never get to catch up to their "gifted" peers.
    No one really benefits from this grouping, and if we waited till high school to decide what kids should be in advanced math... everyone will be better off.

    1. What "advantages" does an immigrant, native Chinese or Urdu speaker have? How does their math performance compare to the "kids of color"?

    2. That's not my experience with gifted programs. Many children in gifted programs have siblings who don't qualify for those programs. It's clearly not driven by privilege, or you'd expect to see very few siblings where one is gifted track and one isn't.

      Accelerating math needs to start early, because math gets harder to learn as you get older. Honestly, they should focus on accelerating the low achieving track rather than crippling the high achieving track. Every child is capable of learning algebra before middle school.

      1. Yeah, he's full of it. I was definitely not privileged, except in the sense that I had both parents. They, however, were not terribly productive people. My older sister was single out from kindergarten as gifted. In first grade, I was speech therapy and they gave me an IQ test. That's how I got in. There were other trashy family's kids in the program as well. One of my classmates actually worked for Trump, but he was one of the rich "privileged" ones. Another rich privileged one currently lives in a bus in various parking lots.

        Get over your pity for black people. We who can compete do, and we dont need the help of mediocre white people who feel guilty because their lives were too easy.

    3. Chip D
      May.4.2021 at 6:13 pm
      "these stories are not really what they appear to be..."


    4. As such, privilege is earned through discipline and execution.

    5. my advanced math class in 4th grade you had a bunch of Rizzo's, Kowalski's, Cohen's..and I grew up in working class factory town...sorry your wrong on that. POC what a bullshit label...what do you mean there? Indian, Iranian, Italian? You are "expanding" the class do you don't have to address the elephant in the room..

    6. Bullshit. I took advanced classes in school, and my family was poor. Your solution to "advantaged", is to make everyone equitably miserable (except for the nomenklatura). Oh, and several of my classes had black students, one of whom became a doctor. Your solution would also disadvantage folks of color, all in the name of "antiracism". Take your racist garbage somewhere else.

  50. Since California is already home to some of the stupidest people in the country, as evidenced by this garbage, apparently the desire is to keep everyone at their level so they won't feel bad about themselves.

    Parents will need to turn to private solutions outside of school to avoid the deficiencies of these deficient minds.

  51. So do the Asians pull out of public school, pay for private tutoring, or just leave California altogether?

  52. Do you think the people working the RNA covid screen took Calculus in high school? I bet they did.

    When my daughter went on a college interview, the professor said "Physics saves lives" How? It prevents dopes from going to medical school.

  53. I'd have to do some research to ensure that I'm not sounding like an idiot, but I'll risk it and suggest that this sounds a little bit like "outcome based education." It's been a long time, but between my high school freshman and sophomore years, I had to transfer from a district that had advanced placement and college prep classes to a system where they preached "outcome based education." Their idea was really, "lowest common denominator," because "as long as you meet this arbitrary outcome, you're doing okay."

    The end result was they didn't let me graduate early despite having the credits and subject requirements, and spending my senior year with stupid stuff like swimming, journalism, jazz band, orchestral band, French, Spanish, and German, because the school ran out of everything else.

  54. Mortgage the house, sell your body, do whatever you need to to afford private school. Or get really good at homeschooling. I knew this would happen eventually. They already did this to me in 3rd grade when I already knew how to do the math they were teaching. She teacher made me her tutoring assistant and I had to go around and teach other kids the math instead of moving on to something harder, No way, not my kid.

    1. You don't even need to "get really good" athomeschooling. There are plenty of outlines, courses, programmes, out there. The onlhy thing missing is thatthe child be well enough disciplined to become self-motivated and learn.
      I know probaably a couple hundred people who were/are being home schooled. It ain't rocket science. Kids are naturall curious and love to explore... until the gummit skewl siss tumm beats or shames it out of them. I know plenty of veryyoung children who cn learn anything they set their hearts upon. And their parents don't know a thing about their target subject. But they learn, and learn well. And become life-long learners. Then launch their own kids down that same road. Most times the second and third generation homeschool kids are by far smarter and better balanced than their parents.

  55. Well if this is the case then school sports teams needed to be picked by lottery because there's no such thing as greater athletic ability. Team tryouts need to be banned because we already know everyone has an athlete in them, just different kinds. The football team has to be an even mixture of all types, races, genders, heights, weights, etc. Picking the so-called "best" players for the "varsity" team is discriminatory.

    Same with band. Previous ability to play instruments can no longer be considered in who makes it into the band. There will no longer be a "first chair" flute or trumpet players. All musicians play equally well, but in different ways.

    There can be no contests or competitions of any kind from now on. Again, students who are "featured" in art exhibits or given solos in concerts need to be picked by random lottery (unless the lottery gives results that are not evenly distributed by race and gender. In that case, the lottery will be held again and again until they are.)

  56. For equity's sake they may as well bring back the "New Math". Students, teachers, parents were equally bewildered.

  57. The irony of this "equity" myopia is that it's been and will be the driving force to bring more well-educated foreigners into America -- to do the math-intensive jobs that most Americans can no longer do.

    I have no problem with increasing such foreign immigration, but it's madness to disadvantage Americans seeking such jobs in the name of social justice (or whatever).

  58. This kind of nonsense is the result of turning over education to "educators", i.e. : the bottom half of the bell curve. (See: average SAT scores for ED majors vs *any* other major).

    Admitting that there is such a thing as "smarter" would acknowledge that they are "dumber". Raze the whole of public education to the ground and salt the earth. Our "graduates" are barely literate, know little any particular subject, and are far behind every other first world graduates. Go back to the 2 year Normal Schools for k-8 teachers and require a BA in the subject matter being taught for high school teachers.

    The School of Education in any major university has the students with the lowest SAT scores and the highest GPAs. It's essentially 13th to 16th grades on a pass/fail grading system.The result is a public school system that can't produce educated students.

    This proposal is designed to disguise the fact that nine of 10 high school teachers are innumerate. The "solution" is pure Harrison Bergeron.

    1. schools of education should be shut down..just dens of marxism. You want to teach..get a real degree like physics, chemistry, math, even economics and then be a teaching apprentice for a year..that should be the criteria for middle and high school. elementary school is mostly babysitting...a two year degree in say home economics would be fine.

  59. Well I guess kids gifted at basketball should have to play on teams with the physical rejects until grade 9 too then. Let them get good in college. It’s only fair.

  60. CCP is behind this.

  61. "Buddy [the villain] represents mediocrity, the very idea that everyone should be the same..."
    What The Incredibles Teaches Us About Mediocrity -

  62. It's as if the progressives are doing the bidding of libertarians and trying to totally destroy public education.

  63. "There is no cutoff determining when one child is 'gifted' and another is not."

    Exactly. That's why everyone should be required to ace calculus in seventh grade.

    1. We see this same ludicrous logic in

      “There is no cutoff determining when one child is a ‘girl’ and another is not.”

  64. What if some students are caught after class studying calculus? Expulsion or jail?

  65. Iwill believe these eedjits are serious about "equity" when they start working toward making every kid in any one class be equal.. equal height, weight, strength, proportions.. just like little automata identical in height stature, build, strength.

    Equal outcome is what they want, eh? WHen they start forcing it down their throats by making participation in a REAL system of equal outcome even with differentiated input, then I''ll know they're serious. Until then, its smoke and mirrors, eating peanuts and throwing the empty shells at others sitting about the room.

  66. But not to worry – the rest of the world pretty much universally recognizes talent and ability, so there will always be a Chinese- or Japanese- or German-designed whatever. And American kids, and before long, American adults, will know exactly how to feel about ,that, because some SJW will have told them how to feel about it.

    1. What about Indian-trained engineers?

  67. The goal of the US education system is to make everyone equally ignorant. HOORAY!

  68. ...that day Gov-Guns showed up at your children's schools.

  69. The Dept of Ed is right and wrong: It's true that there's not a clear distinction between "gifted" and "non-gifted" kids. That's irrelevant. All kids should be empowered to rise to their greatest potential, including advanced math or other advanced classes if they're ready.

    1. My school district used IQ tests with 140 as the requirement. 130+ could be accepted too but required lobbying on their behalf.

  70. Harrison Bergeron, call your office.

  71. If the Dept of Ed contends that all kids have the same potential, then they must answer for the fact that not all students in their system rise to the same level.

  72. Destroying society with enforced mediocrity.

    1. Not destroying. Remaking.

      Some children will still have access to unfettered learning opportunities.

  73. Preventing smarter kids from rising to their potential doesn't prove they aren't smarter. It just proves the Dept of Ed are stupid.

    Next year: Shoot the smart people.

  74. There are gifted black kids. This stupid policy will destroy THEIR opportunity.

  75. Everyone's a victim. Are you a public school student who's exceptionally gifted in math? No worries, you're a victim too.

    1. That you represent this as only affecting the "exceptionally gifted" is another example of the depth of your stupidity.

  76. I used to laugh at Derrida and Foucault. Then they took over K12.
    The white oppression claims they make are easily falsifiable. All they have to do is travel to nonwhite countries that have made significant contributions to mathematics (or any). Then they will discover that every culture treats it as a rigorous discipline that appeals to the mentally agile. Diversity advocates dont look beyond the borders when they diagnose what is "white" in America.

    1. Critical Theory is the root of all this shit, and our current obsession with the racial version is merely one branch.

      We go in peacefully, but the only exit will likely entail violence.

  77. Gee, privileged white kids aren’t potty trained until they are 4 or 5, we can’t have that inequity! Everyone must wear diapers until they are 12, and crap in their pants too...

  78. One name. Harrison Bergeron.

    Kurt Vonnegut nailed it.

    1. Your comment is too clever. I will flag your comment shortly. Then it will be my turn to post it.

    2. Boomers and Gen X have in common the experience of the Cold War. When the Marxists lectured people in our era we could always tell them to go to back to the USSR when they got too extreme. I guess we need a new communist country to send them to. Lets make it California that way they cant complain that we didnt really give them a fair chance.

  79. I guess there are no black students gifted in math?

    1. There are... but fewer than white and fewer still than those who are Asian by dna, or Ashkenazim. Just the way it is.

      It's individuals that count.

  80. Virginia Dept of Education recently proposed similar changes to the state’s math curriculum for “equity”.

    Virginia Mathematics Pathway Initiative.

    https://www.doe.virginia dot gov/instruction/mathematics/vmpi/index.shtml

  81. Now there's no more oak oppression
    For they passed a noble law
    And the trees are all kept equal
    By hatchet, axe, and saw

  82. Time to apply these concepts to sports.

    All players on a team should play the same number of minutes.

    1. No I want a 50 meters lead in the 100 meters so the outcome has equity.....

  83. I’m surprised at Reason supporting an educational policy that looks a lot like an industrial policy of picking winners and losers. Students should get the best equal education possible. If they want more, let them find it in their own.

  84. “American [public] schools are failing because they are organized according to a bureaucratic, monopolistic model; their organizing principle is basically the same as that of a socialist economy.”
    ~ David Boaz

    The entire organizational model has failed. Even this horrendous pandemic has offered lessons and opportunities. Government schools have been shown to be both worse and easier to do without than we suspected. Let's end this error. It will never be easier than simply never fully restarting the folly.

  85. Well I think if its about equality in outcomes we need to look at sports...based on you race for example you get "x" 'meters in a 100 meter dash head start (wow isn't that the program the left loves to fund.."head start")? Or for say bball...we can't allow taller folks to be the time to change the rules.

    First it was segragation as the problem for unequal results so we had busing (not that it worked to integrate), then we went to "funding" so we spent massive amounts of money on urban schools and all sorts of "support programs" like midnight bball, head start and so on, then it was the "tests" are racist (remember when old Jesse Jackson said poor black kids don't know what a yacht is so they couldn't get the SAT question using a yacht in a reading example correct) now its the actual area of study that is racist....come on corn pop...maybe just maybe its time to look somwhere else as the cause of unequal results in certain fields (and over representation in other fields)...this is don't like the results so make sure certain "folks" don't win..but in other areas like sports unequal results are just fine. What total BS

  86. "Teens who are eager readers should be able to study literature instead of math; young people who aren't particularly adept at any academic discipline might pick up art, music, computers, or even trade skills. (Coding doesn't need to be mandatory, but it could be an option.)"

    I know it's mostly off topic, but I'm not sure this writer understands what "coding" entails. I have several friends that were devs at MS starting in the early 90s, and the white boards in their offices were full of high end math. I'm told ray tracing doesn't happen without calculus. Correct me if I'm wrong, but that's my experience. Maybe now it's all somehow easier, but back then it sounded like all math, all the time.

    1. I'm mostly pretty innumerate, and I can do CSS and HTML, and basic spread sheet stuff. But these guys were on a much higher math plane.

    2. SQL is based upon set theory.

      1. Yep, all set theory and linear algebra.

        1. really? is it a vector space over boolean operators ? or you just mean the structure generally?

          1. My (very limited understanding) is that, at it's heart, it is primarily relational, so yes, logical vectors.

          2. See the Wikipedia article "Relational Model".

    3. In short, all coding is algebra. If you cannot wrap your mind around variables, it's not possible to write any non-trivial code. However, there is is almost no computation of any form involved.

      Public-facing interfaces are all art and design, but they still require understanding of algebra and geometry to make things proportional and even.

      After that, it's all what you do with it. Engineering calculations need engineering. 3D Visuals need a huge amount of computation.

      So you can be bad at arithmetic and get poor grades in math, while still excelling in computer science. However, if you cannot wrap your mind around geometry and algebra at all, it's not going to function properly.

      1. algebra is computer code before there were computing machines.

        1. Instruction sets being what they are.

  87. This lunacy is not new: research 'No Tall Poppies' in education.

  88. I guess there are no black students gifted in math?

    Well Visit Affiliate Marketing in Nepal

  89. Jaime Escalante must be turning in his grave.

  90. This 'solution' became inevitable once they started tracking academic performance by 'race.'

    Racism, like any other sort of despotism is still bad, even when it is 'benevolent.'

  91. No Child Gets Ahead

  92. The real irony here is that if implemented, this policy will WIDEN not narrow the gap between gifted and other kids. With the gifted in their class, other kids will go silent, feel left behind, get discouraged and loose motivation. A truly inequitable equity outcome. Par for that course.

    1. You are correct! Gifted kids held down or held back will either run away with the class, or disrupt the class until they are constructively challenged. Gifted kids should not be in a class that simply does more work or projects, but a class that moves on through the subject matter at their own pace, usually fast. If they are assigned projects in a class, the projects should require using material presented in the class room. I tutor home schooled kids who quit public school of their own volition because they were bored silly. I have them reading advanced subject matter books in STEM subjects, writing technical papers on projects that requires them to build something, do the math to build it, write a paper on the theory complete the equations, and empirical data with an analysis of theory verses results. I take them on field trips in the woods and teach them to build shelters, make fires with nothing but what they can pickup off the ground, forage for plants, hunt, fish and trap for meat, and tan hides and pelts. They love it, especially using the axes, large knives, and making tools from rocks.

  93. This has already been implemented in San Francisco driven by Jo Boaler (implemented by Richard Carranza) *seven* years ago. She is not honest with the results . NYT or 60 minutes should audit what happened here instead of just taking her word for it. This has made opportunity gaps larger and Calculus enrollment has dropped significantly in Black and Latino cohorts.

    Here is old data, things have only gotten worse.

  94. Is there any real way to stop this march to the bottom? Apparently not... The hypocrisy already mentioned by others is so very BLATANT, i.e. the use of "affirmative action racism" to "fight racism" isn't being applied to sports - wonder why? OK, that's MORE IMPORTANT than simple responsible constructive behaviors - I almost forgot, not "woke" I guess.

  95. Having taught remedial math courses at the local vocational trade schools, junior colleges, and universities, I see how poorly high school graduates are at math. Remedial courses are actually high school courses taught at full tuition rates with out academic credit. These are the students that failed to pass the college admissions test portion in math. These students have not been drilled in their simple arithmetic math facts and are dependent on electronic calculators. A few simply had a bad test day, it happens. The rest should have never been admitted to college. That would be about 75% of the students I taught. If they do not pass my pass-fail course working at their own pace on computer aided instruction courses, they are dismissed from school. The biggest cause of failure is not knowing their numbers and arithmetic facts so they can solve simple arithmetic problems in their head. Not knowing facts they have to look them up, or use the calculator. That takes more time than you might thing and slows them way down, to where they can not keep up with the homework. The USA educational system needs a real world knowledge test of high school subjects the students must know to graduate from high school.

    1. "The biggest cause of failure is not knowing their numbers and arithmetic facts so they can solve simple arithmetic problems in their head. "

      I see this all the time. The problem started in the elementary schools where they no longer do rote memorization of multiplication tables.

      You cannot factor anything if you do not have those memorized. If you cannot do simple factoring then even basic algebra becomes a nightmare.

      The truly annoying part is that these same people think they are "just bad at math" yet have no problem counting coinage and/or making change. e.g. That six nickels equals three dimes is beyond obvious to them.

      The ability is mostly there, just inhibited by simple ignorance.

  96. Wanna make kids REALLY hate math? Add this to it: "so that students come to view mathematics as a connected, multi-dimensional subject that is about sense making and reasoning, to which they can contribute and belong."

    How about giving students something they will actually use, all of them: financial math. Give each student a small portfolio, say $100, that they cannot access until after the school year is over. They get to grow it or blow it! It'll be well worth the extra $100 per student and talk about students wanting to learn from each other? The nerds will be the most popular kids on campus!

  97. the liberals plan to "Dumb Down America" is in full swing. It has nothing to do with equity, and everything to do with political control.

  98. "An important goal of this framework is to replace ideas of innate mathematics 'talent' and 'giftedness' with the recognition that every student is on a growth pathway,"

    If they really believed this, they would be doing more tracking, not less. Best way to get a kid to think he is innately bad at math is to force him into a classroom with classmates who are miles ahead of him on their "growth pathway".

    The answer is that math needs to personalized. Schools should be doing flipped classroom, with kids primarily graded on how much Kahn Academy activities they do and classes primarily turned into study halls with teachers and community volunteers tutoring students through the bits they struggle with. Some students will finish high school barely able to do Algebra. Others will be doing multivariate calculus. That's fine. The key is that nobody will be drowned in knowledge unable to keep up, nor bored out of their mind rehashing the obvious. Single tracking serves nobody well and is ridiculous in math, which can so easily automate the teach-assess-correct-reassess loop.

  99. This is the stupidest shit I've ever read in my life (the instructors, not the author). These folks are fucking disgusting.

    1. This is not new... the 1992 Math Framework for California Public Schools was chaired by a guy with a degree in English... it took a few years to get it replaced by real content standards, but then the Common Core math standards hired him (Phil Daro) to chair the CCM development.

      Boaler and Daro were both involved in Common Core testing,, also a disaster

  100. Here's a question: when will we see an effort to ensure that everyone makes the basketball team because we cannot have people who are gifted at basketball outclass people who do not share those same gifts?

    And a related question would be when will we see efforts to ensure that the racial diversity of the school athletic teams are strictly reflective of the population? For example, if blacks comprise 13% of the population, there can be no more than 2 blacks on any 15-member basketball team.

    1. When? Never. Even 1st graders can tell the difference.

  101. This has already been implemented in San Francisco driven by Jo Boaler (implemented by Richard Carranza) *seven* years ago. She is not honest with the results . NYT or 60 minutes should audit what happened here instead of just taking her word for it.

    Here is old data, things have only gotten worse.

  102. Give a bunch of frustrated artsies power over math, and watch them take out their anger at math teachers on the students. If the policy makers had been any good at math they'd be in tech. I mean, maybe calculus is overrated, but the alternative is not language !!!

  103. “The year was 2081, and everybody was finally equal.”
    - Kurt Vonnegut. “Harrison Bergeron”

    The race to the bottom picks up speed.

  104. This is quite hilarious to me. Why would children be so scared of math? Wrong make believes and tyrannical calculus tutor. They made me believe math was a demon all my youthful yearss! Damn!
    With all said, let student help themselves with math tutorials online such as;

  105. Learning has become more difficult for many students during the pandemic. This applies to both mathematics and grammar. but this is not a reason to get upset. The best solution can always be found. For example, when I realized that it was difficult to write an essay on my own, I decided to contact and received the papers I needed in a short time

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