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EDUCATION: Math graduation requirements just don’t add up

Letter by Lyle Laws, Puyallup on April 29, 2013 at 1:59 pm with No Comments »
April 29, 2013 1:59 pm

We need to subtract some math requirements that just don’t add up before the problem multiplies and divides our opinions even more.

We all use basic arithmetic skills when we shop, balance our checkbooks and solve a great variety of day-to-day problems, but in my opinion, requiring algebra as a high school graduation requirement borders on cruel and unusual punishment.

Students who want post-arithmetic skills should be able to take all of the higher math classes they want, but why saddle those who don’t want to take them with skills that 99.9 percent of them will never need or use?

The huge amount of money spent trying to force everyone to learn higher math skills could be far better used to make sure that all grads can read and write at a much higher level than most of them do at this time, or to give already strapped taxpayers some relief.

Algebra, like the so-called “New Math” fiasco touted in the 1960s, is a monumental waste of time and taxpayer dollars.

Mark Twain once said something like: “If you ever think you would want to back and relive your high school years, remember algebra!”

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