The new mathematics framework in California is pushing educators to “teach towards social justice” in mathematics classes.
The 13-part guide explains that mathematics has always been viewed as a “neutral discipline.” The new framework is looking to change this moving forward by asking math teachers to “analyze lessons through an equity lens.”
From The Daily Wire:
“A fundamental aim of this framework is to respond [to] issues of inequity in mathematics learning,” the first chapter of the framework reads. “Equity influences all aspects of this document.”
The second chapter of the framework promotes instruction that “challenges the deeply-entrenched policies and practices that lead to inequitable outcomes.”
As part of the equity framework, teachers are told that attempting to “treat everyone the same” is considered “insufficient.” Instead, they must “counter the cultural forces that have led to and continue to perpetuate current inequities.”
Educators are told to take every opportunity to connect mathematical concepts to social justice topics. Examples of teaching “culturally relevant” topics in math class include examining word problems. The framework suggests that fifth-grade math projects should be focused on “access to water as a human right” and integrate math topics such as volume, capacity, and proportions. When students are learning about statistics and data sets, teachers should ask questions such as, “Who attends your school? Which racial and gender groups are represented? And how does your school data compare to state or national data?”
The framework is also asking that teachers dedicate portions of class to time to raising awareness about how textbooks imply gender stereotypes and for teachers to include discussions on LGBT issues.