THE NUMBER of high-achieving maths students in Ireland lags well behind that in other developed nations, raising serious concerns about our future competitiveness.
A major new report also questions whether planned changes to the maths curriculum will be enough to resolve chronic underachievement in the subject.
The forthcoming discussion paper for the National Competitiveness Council blames “uninspiring teaching, lack of application, the points system, school policy and guidance, and student choice” for the maths crisis. It concludes: “Curriculum change may not solve underachievement not caused by the curriculum.”
The paper also hints that transition year may be hindering the progress of high-achieving maths students. It questions “whether the discontinuity in mathematics development and effort caused by the transition year is advisable for some talented young people”.
It also points out that only 35 per cent of those in teacher training have higher-level Leaving Cert maths, whereas 95 per cent have higher-level English.
Full Story: Irish Times