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the fly questions ; does the New Superintendent Get "Paid" to promote TERC

In Uncategorized on May 29, 2007 at 12:41 pm

New Superintendent Gets “Paid” to promote TERC,well it sure looks that way….

Too bad our Board of Education does not ask its potential employees to provide conflict-of-interest disclosures with regard to their educational endeavors. What would be standard ethics for business and government is simply overlooked by our … hmm… education administrators of high standing. A casual Google of the Brooks’ (including his co-author wife Jacqueline Grennon Brooks who also drinks heartily from the constructivst chalice) reveals quite a lot of information with regard to their financial interests in the TERC reform movement. Beginning as early as 1991, Mrs Brooks has received substantial sums to advocate, study and promote this dysfunctional and mathematically illiterate program. No less than $100,000 dollars is reported. Later, from 1994 to 2000, Mrs. Brooks is represented as a “Co-Principal” in a grant award of $4 million dollars from the NSF to promote TERC. Now we’re talking real money.

So, what does this mean for Ridgewood? The Brooks’ conflict-of-interest is obvious and disheartening. If the Brooks’ are paid through grant making to take on the advocacy of TERC, how can our children be expected to get the benefit of non-biased judgments with regard to what may be the best math program for them. Answer: they can’t and they won’t. Did our Board of Education know about these grants? If they did, would they care? Do they even understand what constitutes a conflict-of-interest? Would they now be able to admit that they were fooled in bringing in Mr. Brooks to “Continue development of curriculum, especially math and science,” as they so boldly stated in the October 16, 2007 Board minutes? Stay tuned…..

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  1. This would appear to be a huge conflit of interest to the casual observer.

    However, one doubts that Mr. Bombace and company will see it as so.

    It is time for Bombace to put out the fire before it engulfs his tenure.

  2. I don’t think the board knew. This would definately be something they would have discussed beforehand.

  3. What are your sources for the info about funding?

  4. To the above who asks for the “sources for the info about funding.”

    What, did you not read the article? The source is public record at the National Science Foundation (NSF). All governement grants and their receipients are made public.

    If you don’t believe that, why don’t you just Google, Jacqueline Grennon Brooks, like the auther of this article did?

    Your sycophancy is showing in your ignorance.

  5. http://www.nsf.gov

    MSTE: Integrating Mathematics, Science and Technology in the Elementary Schools

    Awarded Amount to Date:
    $4,165,323

    Investigator(s):
    Thomas Liao Thomas.Liao@sunysb.edu(Principal Investigator)
    Jacqueline Grennon Brooks (Co-Principal Investigator)
    Michael Hacker (Co-Principal Investigator)
    Karl Swyler (Co-Principal Investigator)

  6. You can read about the grant at the following site.

    http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=9618962

  7. So many schools that tried TERC when it first came out have abandoned it that it’s now just derided as another bad government funded experiment. The only thing keeping it going are the grants that have been doled out from the NSF. Obviously, those grants keep Mr & Mrs Brooks going too!

    The NSF also gave $4.9 million dollars to TERC Inc. Talk about greasing the wheels of a program nobody wants. Soon, though, it will go the way of Mathland, which went out of business.

    Eventually, the NSF will stop propping up TERC with grants. One could only hope that our government has better things to do with our money.

    That TERC is in Ridgewood, however, remains a mystery.

  8. You can get the Brooks book from Biblio for $1 + shipping if you’re interested in reading an Ultrafeminist diatribe against traditional math and science education. This seems to be a continuation of the AAUW and NEA assault on traditional education. The only reason for this claptrap is to keep radical feminist in the money by playing victim. They create bogey people and lie to men and women about their kids needs when it is their own pecuniary interests they are concerned about.

  9. http://www.mycommunity.com/town/Ridgewood

    Professor disappointed that TERC is still being used.

    Another day. Another email to a parent from a university professor. This time the professor is Jonathan Goodman, Professor of Mathematics at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, NYU.

    “I was disappointed to read your email asking about TERC. I thought this discredited program was disappearing from the earth. All the phony studies supporting it have been debunked. “

    Professor Goodman worked hard to get the public school his kids attended in the Village to not use TERC materials.

    Today, he can still spot the products of fuzzy math education in his college classes. “They are the bright hard working kids who struggle with the simplest derivations.”

    The full email exchange can be found at http://www.VORmath.info

    Parents have been questioning the effectiveness of the program since its inception. The math materials were introduced into the school about 6 years ago. About six years ago, since no document showing the plan for its introduction and rollout has ever been produced or presented to parents from the administration.

    The problem with the materials continues to be obfuscated as parents with kids having the most exposure readily supplement their childrens education with tutoring. The tutoring is usually the result of seeing their child struggle to do basic arithmetic or answer word problems without drawing all 74 ducks only to cross out 39 of them,

    Yet, some classrooms only see the TERC materials as supplementation, further obfuscating the problem.

    But you know the TERC materials when you see them. In this author’s case, its the end of second grade, and even the “hot off the press” second edition materials are not impressive. Let me share with you.

    End of second grade, the Partners, Teams, and Paper Clips lesson of TERC 2 asks the child to “FIll in the missing numbers on the 100 chart”.

    Compare this to the real world problem located on the last page of Singapore Math Primary Mathematics 2B.

    A toy costs $6.05. Ryan has 24 quarters. and two nickels. Does he have enough money to buy the toy?

    “Unfortunately, TERC has not enriched the curriculum with understanding, it has denuded it of content, ” writes Professor Goodman.

    I think the professor’s words says it all.

    “TERC is the second most mathematically illiterate and damaging program I have ever seen.”
    Prof. R. James Milgram of Stanford University, co-author of the “Common Ground Report” on mathematics.

    Why are we using TERC? Why is it here?

  10. Regina Botsford claims that TERC is not the “curriculum.” That’s bull#@%&.

    Why are these stupid workbooks in our children’s classrooms? Why are our kids made to partake in this preposterous TERC experiment? Why is their math education being sacrificed?

    So that Grennon and Martin Brooks can keep collecting grants from the NSF?

    Why are our administrators 10 years behind everybody else?

    How do they get conned with transparent stuff like this? They seem to be the ONLY ones who don’t know that TERC is a boondoggle, meant to line the pockets of anti-intellectual snake oil salesmen.

  11. We need to ask for a specific grade by grade math curriculum.

  12. “Conflict of interest”, used as a noun, should not be hyphenated.
    – product of Ridgewood Public Schools

  13. Hello: I am just trying to add my opposition to TERC, fuzzy math, etc. I read about the Ridgewood issue in the NY Times internet edition. I live in North Carolina, and have a rising 10th grader. The curriculum here purports to be a mixture of “fuzzy” and “traditional” math, but the emphasis is on fuzzy. They started using calculators in elementary school. Learning the times tables, and especially learning how to multiply and divide by 2, 5, and 10 in your head, was never stressed. The result is that I have a smart child who struggles with all math, because she has to do every operation on the calculator, and has no “feel” for whether an answer is correct. We just went through geometry, and while she is faster than I am in certain visual exercises, when it comes to word problems that require careful use of step by step math, forget it. I have spoken to good, experienced math teachers (forget about the younger ones, who neither know math nor know how to teach) and the consensus is that calculators should not be used in elementary school at all, and that while some of the new approaches have merit, the kids MUST first be grounded in traditional math. It’s like anything else. First you have to walk. Then you learn to run. Why do all sports teams and the military all run DRILLS? Answer — because DRILL WORKS! Thanks.

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