Why do we need the Idaho Math Initiative?

Education leaders in Idaho consistently hear from employers and colleges and universities in Idaho that Idaho students do not have the math skills they need to succeed in the work force or a postsecondary education setting when they graduate from high school. Scores on statewide assessments also show a troubling trend in math as students move through our K-12 system: As students grow older, fewer of them reach proficiency on the ISAT. Therefore, we must improve math education across all grades in Idaho to ensure we prepare every student to live, work and succeed in the 21st century.

Links:
  • American Diploma Project.
    Idaho students are not the only ones struggling in math. Learn more about how Idaho students compare to students across the nation in math and what other states are doing to improve math education. Visit the American Diploma Project at www.achieve.org.
  • Recommendations from the National Mathematics Advisory Panel.
    In 2006, President George W. Bush created the National Mathematics Advisory Panel. The Panel was charted with providing recommendations to the President and the U.S. Department of Education on the best use of scientifically based research to advance the teaching and learning of math across the country. The Panel released its recommendations in March 2008. The findings and recommendations match the goals and objectives of the Idaho Math Initiative, which will be implemented in the 2008-2009 school year.
    Click here to learn more about the recommendations of the National Math Panel.
  • New Idaho high school graduation requirements
    Students who enter the 9th grade in Fall 2009 and beyond must meet new high school graduation requirements. Under the new requirements, students must take three years of math to graduate from high school, and two of the courses must be Algebra I and Geometry, or classes that meet state content standards for those courses. The Idaho Math Initiative will help prepare Idaho students to successfully complete these higher levels of math. For more information on the new graduation requirements, please click here.
  • What Parents Need to Know.
    This article from the U.S. Department of Education provides parents with the facts on what their children will be expected to know and learn in the 21st century. Download the article here.
What are people saying about the Idaho Math Initiative?

The Idaho Math Initiative has widespread support from educators, business leaders and the Legislature. Here are some of the things people have said about the Idaho Math Initiative:

"The Idaho Council of Teachers of Mathematics is a collaborative network of Idaho's K-12 teachers who share a passion for ensuring our students have the conceptual understanding and computational fluency needed to solve mathematical problems. The Idaho Math Initiative reflects this same passion and we wholeheartedly support the initiative and look forward to the professional learning engendered
in it." – Jan Harwood, president of Idaho Council of Teachers of Mathematics

"Strengthening Idaho's math education will ultimately not only enhance the opportunities available to our students, but also improve the economic future of the entire state of Idaho. To compete in today's global economy, mathematics must be at the foundation of a quality education, no matter the ultimate career path of a child." – Mark Durcan, President and COO, Micron Technology, Inc.

Learn more about the Idaho Math Initiative. Download the State Department of Education's 2008 Report the Legislature. Click Here to download the Report.

Math resources for families. Here are some resources you can used to get more involved in your child's education.

  • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics' Family Resources gives parents and families the resources they need to help students learn math. Web link.
  • Figure This! Math Challenges for Families: Web link