When: 9:00 a.m., EDT, Tuesday, September 12

Where: Zenger Room, National Press Club

Who: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Why: Curriculum Focal Points for Prekindergarten through Grade 8 Mathematics identifies three important mathematical topics at each grade level, preK-8, to bring coherence to the diverse mathematics curricula in the United States. The focal points offer a framework for states and districts to use in designing more focused curricular expectations and assessments. They lay a foundation for deep understanding and lasting learning in mathematics. The focal points are an extension of NCTM’s Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (2000) and the next step in implementing the vision of the Standards.

Math curricula in the United States today are often described as “a mile wide and an inch deep.” Some states have close to 100 learning expectations per grade, with different expectations from state to state. The focal points are intended to begin a national discussion on how to bring consistency and coherence to mathematics curricula. At each grade, the three topics present related ideas, concepts, skills, and procedures that form the necessary foundation for understanding concepts in higher-level mathematics.

The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics is the world’s largest organization dedicated to improving mathematics education in prekindergarten through grade 12. It is a public voice of mathematics education, providing vision, leadership, and professional development to support teachers in ensuring mathematics learning of the highest quality for all students. The Council’s Principles and Standards for School Mathematics includes guidelines for excellence in mathematics education and issues a call for all students to engage in more challenging mathematics. NCTM is dedicated to ongoing dialogue and constructive discussion with all stakeholders about what is best for our nation’s students.

Media Contact: Gay Dillin (gdillin@nctm.org or 703 620-9840 ext.2189)

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