Gearhart: Having right answers in math is racist? (Opinion)
A move to change the way math is taught in Oregon public schools drew the wrath of Jim Gearhart.
According to a course being promoted by the Oregon Department of Education, “white supremacy culture” infiltrates classrooms because math requires students to show their work and find the right answer.
"The concept of mathematics being purely objective is unequivocally false, and teaching it is even much less so," the document for the "Equitable Math" toolkit states. "Upholding the idea that there are always right and wrong answers perpetuate objectivity as well as fear of open conflict.”
The concept does not sit well with Jim.
“This is the Super Bowl, the Stanley Cup, the World Series of idiocy and asininity in one event,” Jim Gearhart said of the idea during the latest weekly Jim Gearhart podcast and Facebook Live show, presented every Thursday at 10:30 a.m. on Facebook.com/NJ1015.
Jim believes that students will be taught that there is no certainty in mathematics, which runs contrary to what has been taught for generations.
“We’ve always used that as a symbol of objectivity and truth. ‘It is mathematically proven. It is mathematically true,’ because math can never be wrong. Now these kids are being taught math can be wrong because the answer is not fixed. Two plus two is seven if that’s what you wish,” Jim said.
Jim said that program operates in the belief that kids are “too dumb to learn math. And that’s not true.”
He recalled a program in which New Jersey kids from underserved, poor neighborhoods were taught chess and they became chess champions.
“This is so dumb and so insulting. What is going on in the state of Oregon,” Jim asked.
And what happens when someone taught using this method earns an engineering degree, a field dependent on exact measurements.
“That’s when it’s going to be fun,” Jim said.
The Jim Gearhart show is LIVE on Facebook every Thursday at 10:30 a.m., at Facebook.com/NJ1015. Got an idea for an upcoming installment of Jim's show? Meet Jim at Facebook.com/NJ1015 to suggest it in the comments, or email Jim@nj1015.com.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5's Jim Gearhart. Any opinions expressed are Jim's own.