MATHEMATICS EDUCATION FORUM

December 19, 2014

Math Ed Forum Meeting Minutes

Saturday, November 27, 1999



Prepared by Shirley Dalrymple

Present: Eric Muller, Bradd Hart (co-chairs) Rima Cohen, Lynda Colgan, Judy Crompton, Shirley Dalrymple, Gord Doctorow, Gila Hanna, Peter Harrison, John Ip, John Kezys, Jeff Shifrin, Eugene Silaev, Peter Taylor, Cheryl Turner, Chen Weihan, David Zimmer

1. Minutes of the previous meeting:
Moved for acceptance Gila Hanna, seconded John Ip, motion carried

2. Mathematics Education of future teachers - Bradd Hart
The proposal addressed
- in-service and pre-service for new teachers
- the teacher shortage
The proposal went through two ministries but we did not receive funding, it was suggested that the proposal be "fixed" up, run by the faculties and tried again
The new proposal team: Eric Muller, Walter Whitely and Bradd Hart - As an initial step they will consult many groups including Ministry of Education
- The Field's Institute could coordinate a full day meeting in April. The elementary shortage and mathematics education issues could be addressed in the morning and secondary issues in the afternoon. Representatives should include both Ministries, College of Teachers, 8 to 10 from the Faculties of Education, and community person(s). There could be a series of 3 or 4 short sessions for each panel. The number of people attending should be restricted to less than 40.
- The goal would be to put together a new action plan to present again to the Ministry. Judy Crompton suggested that a committee at the Ministry could do the reading.

Discussion:

- It was stressed that it is critical that the College of Teachers be involved; also that specific request be made regarding programs for example the Mathematics Leadership Program at Queen's University and that specific contact people who are looking at this should be invited.

- It was pointed out that mathematics education leadership has taken on a different role than the other discipline groups and we might be able to use this to our advantage.

- On November 17 and 18, 1998 there was a two day focus group meeting to discuss the problem of the teacher shortage. At that time a large number of directors were moving toward generalists which is in contradiction to everything else that has been said. In attendance were Director's of Education, retired Superintendents and other representatives. It was organized and coordinated by MOE.

- It was suggested that the participation at the April meeting be by invitation only, it should try to attract specialists in mathematics at the Faculties of Education and Deans of Faculties so that decisions can be made. It is important that we have the ability to make decisions and make changes. Field's can make a difference. We need to look at innovative programs, highlight some things that have been successful and find programs that will attract students to mathematics education.

- We need to order the "Professionally Speaking" December "98 to use the statistics that show that many Boards are already experiencing shortages of French, Mathematics and Science teachers. The shortage seems to be the worst in math and in the math at the secondary schools. There is a general shortage in elementary school teachers. Queen's is giving priority to math but 90% of the elementary applications are from women who have very little math background.

- It was stated that applicants need some math and science for enrollment for a career in teaching. He believes that the teaching requirements are broader than they used to be but we don't have any hard data. A change in entrance requirements may help. The MOE needs to be convinced that the shortage of math teachers is critical. We could get The College of Teachers' profiles on retirement rates and what this will mean in terms of loss of specialists.

- It was suggested that we need a high profile person to speak at the meeting such as Dr. David Foote.

- We need to work on getting and packaging some data to support our position from places such as individual Boards and Faculties of Education. - A two-year teacher education program may be needed.

- It was pointed out that these are not new issues; they have risen elsewhere. It may be useful to get ads from various countries for ideas, especially Australia, New Zealand and Great Britain.

- We may ask for submissions from many groups to spread a wider net. - We need to take a long-term view.

- Since the government is likely to respond if it recognizes that there is a crisis, we need to present the proposal that way. We may consider hiring an expert at handling data

- The committee will take all the suggestions under advisement.

3. Grade 11 and 12 curriculum - Judy Crompton
- Judy discussed the history of the new policy document and shared some items from the new menu that she was able to. Shirley Dalrymple shared some of her department's experiences in implementing the new grade 9 curriculum. A discussion of where do we go from here with respect to 11 and 12 followed.

4. OMCA Activities - John Ip
- The last meeting was held in Hamilton and the main topic for discussion was assessment. There will be a January 27/28, 2000 retreat devoted to elementary and secondary assessment. OMCA sent a second letter to MOE regarding:

- The elementary report card, reporting on 5 strands during each reporting cycle which is not working and is creating artificial ways of reporting. The letter included suggestions for change.

- The secondary issues are the lack of definition on how to use the achievement chart, the grade 9 summative assessment, the lack of knowledge of many grade 9 teachers, the difficulty of implementation and the lack of confidence that teachers have.

- It was noted that here will be a Math Coordinators' meeting on Wednesday, May 31

5. OAME Activities - Dave Zimmer
- OAME Annual Conference will be held in Ottawa in May

- Lots of in-service for grades 9 and 10 is needed especially around developing and implementing a new course, using technology like the graphing calculators and Geometer's Skethpad, and assessment.

6. Report on the Summer Institutes:

- The Summer Institutes were deemed a huge success reaching over 500 teachers from over 400 schools. OMCA provided the planning and delivery, OAME provided the network and funding came from the publishers, Texas Instruments and the Ministry.

- Future Summer Institutes are very likely but the money will go through OTF, and the role of OMCA and OAME will be reduced.

- One of the issues that will block some of the implementation of grade 9 and 10 curriculum is that there is not enough technology, no access to labs, difficulty of finding time for teaches to learn how to use it, about 80% of the province may not be able to deliver.

7. Report on the June Technology Conference at Brock University - Eric Muller

- It is the 20th anniversary year for OCMA.

- June conference will be held Thursday June 1 and Friday June 2. The conference will provide an opportunity for professional development and networking for members of the college faculties.

- This annual conference will be at the Kempenfeldt Centre. Topics include: Testing at College, mathematics and English testing OCASS, keeping track and developing instruments, collect data.

8. World Mathematics Year 2000
- CMS will form the base for information: let Eric Muller or Bill Langford know of any activities

- There are many activities across Canada and all over the world, especially in Quebec, France and Belgium

- These include: exhibits, conferences, celebrations, etc

- Field's will host events over the 10 days of June 1st to 10th such as:

- Industrial Math Workshop, Field's/Rom Symposium, Outreach to high schools, History around the Field's Medal, Four day CMS meeting/joint conference

Future Meetings: Eric will be make contact to set some dates.

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Summary of the conference
"Technology in Mathematics Education at the Secondary and Tertiary Levels"
held at Brock University, June 2-4, 1999

This conference provided a forum for mathematics educators who had researched or employed technology in their classes at the secondary, college, or undergraduate levels. The program, which included five Plenary speakers and six concurrent Focus Groups, was modeled on similar conferences entitled Studies sponsored by the International Commission on Mathematics Instruction. To facilitate discussion the number of members within each focus group, and thus in the conference, was limited. Most of the participants were invited and through grants a number of PhD students were sponsored.

The five Plenary Speakers were Jonathan Choate (Groton School), Paul Zorn (St. Olaf College), Jon Borwein (Simon Fraser University), Stephen Watt (University of Western Ontario), and Loki Jorgensen (Simon Fraser University). There were six Focus Groups:

FG 1 "Technology at the secondary school level" Leaders: Gary Flewelling (Consultant) and Peter Harrison (Toronto District School Board)

FG 2 "Technology at the tertiary level - university" Leaders: Joel Hillel (Concordia University) and Rob Corless (University of Western Ontario)

FG 3 "Technology at the tertiary level - college" Leaders: Jacqueline Klasa (Vanier College) and Alan Cooper (Langara College)
(Due to conflict with other conferences this Focus Group was integrated into the others)

FG 4 "Technology in mathematics teacher education" Leaders: Douglas McDougall (OISE/University of Toronto) and Geoffrey Roulet (Queen's University)

FG 5 "Mathematics education and the Web at the secondary level" Leaders: David Reid (Acadia University) and Ethel Thayer (Consultant Canada's Schoolnet)

FG 6 "Mathematics education and the Web at the tertiary level" Leaders: Keith Taylor (University of Saskatchewan) and Sarah Inkpen (Seneca College)

Proceedings are within a month of being published and will be made available to Forum participants. They were edited by Bruce Cload and Tom Jenkyns (Brock University). Conference participants were treated to a tour of a winery and to a dinner at the Table Rock Restaurant over looking Niagara Falls.

This conference was made possible by grants from Brock University, The Fields Institute, and SSHRC.

Eric Muller
Chief Organizer