June 23, 2014
Statement from Bruce McAllister on Math Curriculum Changes
CHESTERMERE, AB (June 23, 2014): Today, Wildrose Education Critic Bruce McAllister released the following statement on Alberta Education’s decision to re-introduce teaching some math basics to the K-9 curriculum:
“I welcome the news Education Minister Jeff Johnson is finally willing to do what Wildrose has been asking him to do for months, and re-establish a focus on teaching the basics of math, like the mastery and memorization of times tables, in our schools. While this is a step in the right direction, further changes are still needed.
“The basics of math are core competencies which our children must have in order to be successful in the job market and post secondary education. In addition to times tables, our children must learn long division, and vertical addition and subtraction. It is still not mandatory to learn these standard algorithms, even with these changes.
“It's astonishing to me that Minister Johnson and his educrats took so long to listen to the concerns of thousands of Albertans and the Official Opposition on this file. Day after day, the Minister rose in the house and dismissed the concerns of Albertans, stating that everything was fine, and now suddenly, bowing to public pressure, he's had a mea culpa and is doing the right thing for our kids.
“There is still much more work to do on this issue, and the efforts from education advocates like Dr. Nhung Tran-Davies, cannot be understated in this process. Dr. Tran-Davies has worked tirelessly on this file, over the past year. Her ‘Back to Basics’ petition has nearly 17,000 signatures of support, and has garnered accolades from parents, teachers and math experts right across the country.
“The Minister and his colleagues have finally started to listen. Let's make sure they walk the walk and our kids see some positive changes in the classroom.”