Issue Background

Eighth Grade Math

The West Michigan Talent Triangle supports efforts that advance math outcomes for students and better prepares them for college and career.

For many of the high paying jobs in the 21st century, students will need critical thinking skills that they can acquire through sound math instruction. Michigan took a big step forward by adopting new standards that help students understand the order and operations of mathematics better.

In middle school, students unknowingly select the math path they will stay on for the remainder of their educational career. High flying students will take algebra, which opens their schedules up in high school to take honors courses and acquire college credit early. Those students need significantly less remediation at the college level in math courses. We’re working to create a system for mathematics that works for all students. 

Our school districts have been working tirelessly to evaluate cirriculum and develop engaging lesson plans that help students understand the "why" of math and not just the "how."

Legislators would be well served to make sure our standards and assessment systems for mathematics and the middle and secondary level are aligned. The current system is disjointed in that middle school curriculum focuses on one set of standards while high school is geared toward college and career readiness standards.