Something I Wrote on NCTM’s Membership Forum about Equity and NCTM Policy

I also think there should be an opportunity to review NCTM’s policy commitments and their relation to equity at the national conference. It’s not at all clear to me that the policies that NCTM gets behind lobbying for in DC help to reduce inequality. This should be a matter for member discussion.

My understanding — just from things that I’ve read — is that much of NCTM’s lobbying happens as part of the STEM Ed Coalition [http://www.stemedcoalition.org/about-us/our-leadership/]. Here are aspects of the STEM Ed Coalition platform that trouble me, from the perspective of equity:

  • They call for expanding accountability measures and testing to include science, but testing regimes are frequently used to support inequity in practice.
  • They call for private money to flow into education to support STEM education, though in practice private money has been used to support inequity.
  • The foundation for their STEM platform is the belief that STEM jobs are necessary for national security and economic reasons. This kind of nationalistic justification is often used to support inequities in education — after all, it’s in the national interest to have our very best students, and only our very best, in STEM.

If NCTM wants to put equity at the center, then NCTM policy needs to be revisited at the conferences.

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2 thoughts on “Something I Wrote on NCTM’s Membership Forum about Equity and NCTM Policy

    1. First, Ken Krehbiel of NCTM sits on their board of directors:

      http://www.stemedcoalition.org/about-us/our-leadership/

      Second, NCTM legislative platform:

      http://www.nctm.org/uploadedFiles/Research_and_Advocacy/Advocacy_Toolkit/2017%20Legislative%20Platform.pdf

      “Maximize opportunities presented by ongoing attention to STEM education by collaborating
      with other organizations with similar priorities and interests, including the STEM Education
      Coalition.”

      I feel like there was more that I read that I can’t find at the moment. I’ll have to try to keep looking, though it would probably be easier to ask NCTM to explain their relationship with STEM Ed.

      Like

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