Along with many others, I too had my obligatory weekly dose of rage the other day when I read Is Algebra Necessary? by Andrew Hacker.
Now, I'm not going to pretend that there isn't room for improvement in the U.S. educational system. But I think calling to teach "citizen statistics" without teaching algebra is rather silly. I can't imagine trying to teach statistics without some significant exposure to algebra. (Truth be told, calculus is also immensely helpful in learning/understanding statistics as well, but I won't even try and deal with that at the moment.) Ultimately, I think the point that many others have made regarding education versus training is germane here. They are not the same, and if we deem algebra unnnecessary, soon enough we will be dropping literature classes for courses in how to compose PowerPoint presentations and reading Twitter updates.
In other news, I've been busy. Will attempt to get back to semi-regular blogging in the near future, I hope.
1 day ago