Methods of instruction (the "how" or pedagogy) should be determined by the professional teacher in the classroom, based on the needs of individual students and expectations of parents, and not imposed by the government as a one-size-fits-all approach on every classroom in Alberta.
Parents for Choice in Education wrote a policy paper in 2015 "Inspiring Education: The Undermining of Parental Choice", detailing concerns with the direction of "Inspiring Education" and explaining that local schools and teachers must have the freedom to select the methods and resources which most effectively meet the needs of their students and the expectations of parents, instead of having the "how" imposed upon them via mandatory methodology-based curriculum outcomes.
In the C.D. Howe report "What to do about Canada’s declining math scores", Dr. Anna Stokke identifies that a major culprit contributing to Alberta's steep decline in mathematics achievement over the past 20 years has been a shift in mathematics curricula which lacks exposure to key topics in earlier grade levels and overemphasizes what is known as a "discovery-based" approach at the expense of direct instruction.
The resources listed below further explain concerns related to an over-emphasis of discovery-based approaches and the direction proposed by Alberta Education's "Inspiring Education" initiative in 2015.
- The Great Canadian Math Debate, 38-part series - these 38 columns, published by the Edmonton Journal, examine a variety of perspectives related to concerns about math education provincially and nationally.
- VIDEO: Restoring Excellence and Evidence-Based Teaching in the K-12 Curriculum - presented by Dr. Nhung Tran-Davies from the Back to Basics campaign at the Alberta Math and Education Forum, May 29, 2015:
- VIDEO: "Inspiring Education" - Disadvantaging Alberta's Youth - presented by Stuart Wachowicz at the Alberta Math and Education Forum, May 29, 2015:
- VIDEO: Alberta K-12 Math Curriculum - A Math Prof's Perspective - presented by Dr. Vladimir Troitsky at the Alberta Math and Education Forum, May 29, 2015:
- VIDEO: Fixing Math Education in Alberta (and Canada) - What's Gone Wrong? What's Needed? - presented by Dr. Robert Craigen at the Alberta Math and Education Forum, May 29, 2015:
To learn more about the key components and benefits of authentic education choice, as well as the areas which strengthen or hinder education choice, visit the "What is education choice?" page on our website.
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