Texas pulls funding from Everyday Mathematics curriculum

The State of Texas has pulled its funding for the third grade unit of the integrated math curriculum Everyday Mathematics (the University of Chicago School Mathematics Program, a.k.a. "Chicago Math," or just "fuzzy math"). The state board of education charged that the program leaves Texas public school graduates "unprepared" for college math.

As The New York Sun newspaper reported, "While supporters of Everyday Math applaud it and other so-called progressive programs for their emphasis on problem-solving and group work, opponents charge that the best way to teach math is still through rote memorization of facts, calling anything else 'fuzzy math.' A recent entry by the federal Department of Education into the debate cleared up little, judging Everyday Math more effective than some more traditional programs but calling its impact still just 'potentially' positive."

Texas public schools can still receive funding for the other grade units in the grades 1-5 series, or even use local funding to purchase the third grade Everyday Math unit. But some anticipate that most Texas schools will choose another curriculum rather than spend the extra money, or fill in with another curriculum just for the third grade.

According to The New York Sun, the Texas decision has national implications:
Since Texas is one of the country's largest buyers of educational textbooks, the advocates said its decision could force textbook publishers and school districts to rethink their position in the battle.

"What happens in Texas has ramifications for the whole country," a longtime Texas activist for traditional curricula, Donna Garner, said. "It's a huge movement."