The Advocate featured some criticism of the Common Core Math Standards by Ze’ev Wurman, but the most interesting aspect to this story was an admission made by the lead writer of the Common Core Math Standards:
“If you do algebra in grade eight, then you … can reach calculus by grade 12,” said Ze’ev Wurman, a former Department of Education official under George W. Bush who participated in the creation of California’s highly-regarded math standards. Calculus is “not mandatory for being accepted to colleges, but selective colleges expect it,” Wurman added.
Jason Zimba, a professor of physics and math at Bennington College in Vermont and lead writer of the math standards, says they include “an awful lot of algebra before eighth grade,” even though the first full course doesn’t come until high school.
But Zimba also acknowledges that ending with the Common Core in high school could preclude students from attending elite colleges. In many cases, the Core is not aligned with the expectations at the collegiate level. “If you want to take calculus your freshman year in college, you will need to take more mathematics than is in the Common Core,” Zimba said.