How can success in math lead to expanded opportunities for students?

Questions to consider

  • What tests must your students take this year, and throughout their academic career to graduate from high school? To qualify for college? To qualify for other post-graduate opportunities? How do they have to score for these opportunities?
  • How will the transition to Common Core affect your students, and what do they need to do to be prepared?
  • What kinds of math instruction do four-year colleges in Mississippi expect from students? What about the best colleges in the country? What does that mean for your students now?
  • Are AP programs available in your district? How do students do in those programs? What does that mean for your students now?
  • How does performance in math classes affect students’ performance in college? In the workforce? What does that mean for your instruction?

Resources to consult

  • Read the high school graduation requirements for Mississippi and the college entrance requirements for our state universities.
  • The Mississippi School of Math and Science is a selective public academy with an emphasis on STEM teaching. See the admission criteria, and read more about the school here.
  • AP classes can have a huge impact on students’ careers in college. Read these three studies to learn more about this.
  • Studies have shown that different kinds of math teaching can lead to different career choices. Read this excerpt from What’s Math Got to Do With It? by Jo Boaler to learn more.
  • Robert Moses is a civil rights activist who worked to increase voter registration in the Mississippi Delta. In this excerpt from his book Radical Equations, Moses explains why he sees algebra readiness is a civil rights issue.
  • The kinds of jobs available in our society are changing rapidly. Read this paper by MIT economist Frank Levy to see what kinds of jobs might be available, and what kinds of education those jobs will require.
  • In the 2014 – 2015 school year, Mississippi will begin assessing students with the Common Core-aligned PARCC assessment. You can find sample assessment items from that assessment online already.
  • Phil Daro was one of the lead researchers in creating the new Common Core math standards. In these videos he talks about changes in standards, and how to address them.
  • There is lots of data out there about the importance of STEM education See these fact sheets about the importance of advanced math, statistics about STEM education, or statistics about college and career readiness.
  • Research your local community and school district by talking to administrators, fellow teachers, and residents.

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