Without comment–and no grammatical, punctuation, wording changes–what follows is a sampling from the 82-page antiracist “A Pathway to Equitable Math Instruction:

*** “White supremacy culture infiltrates math classroom in everyday teacher action. Coupled with the beliefs that underlie these actions, they perpetuate educational harm on Black, Latinx, and multilingual students, denying them full access to the world of mathematics.”

*** from the White Supremacy Culture section: “This reinforces the idea that there in only one right way to do math. The history of mathematics, its colonization, and what is deemed as ‘acceptable’ knowledge is rich and complex, therefore the way that mathematics is taught in the United States needs to be interrogated because it currently centers Western Eurocentric ways of processing and knowing information. When students are required to learn in this way, they either have to unlearn their learned native traditions to meet teacher expectations, or they are deprived of learning math in their ancestral history. For teachers, teaching the way they learned also reinforces the right to comfort for teachers to conform is easier than to challenge themselves to teach math differently.”

*** Classroom actions promoting white supremacy:

  • Asking students to show their work is a “crutch” for teachers that reinforces “paternalism” and “worship of the written word.”
  • Focusing on the right answer:  “The concept of mathematics being purely objective is unequivocally false, and teaching it is even much less so. Upholding the idea that there are always right and wrong answers perpetuate objectivity as well as fear of open conflict.”
  • Tracking student success is a form of “paternalism and powerhoarding” and “based on the idea that adults know what is right for students.”
  • Grading students, “reinforces inequity and grading any kind of behavior is “inaccurate, confusing, and even misleading grading.”

*** “While there is some value in students being able to complete work independently, when this is the only or most common avenue for learning or practicing, it reinforces individualism and the notion that I’m the only one. This does not give value to collectivism and community understanding, and fosters conditions for competition and individual success, which perpetuates the idea that if a student is failing it is because they are not trying hard enough or that they don’t care.”

*** Teachers are also asked to “identify and challenge the ways that math is used to uphold capitalistic, imperialistic, and racist views.”

There is, of course, much more, but I’ll stop now and ask for your comments, as this course/guide continues making its way into our nation’s schools … ~ Carol