Promoting Equity in the Math Classroom
Inequity in achievement and opportunities to learn mathematics among different subpopulations of students permeate every level of the United States education system: national, local, school, and even individual classrooms. In an effort to address such inequalities and respond to the recommendations made by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) in their Standards documents (1989; 1991), many educators called for a necessary reform in math curriculum. This paper discusses the theory and support behind the development of two reform curricula: Interactive Mathematics Project (IMP) and College Preparatory Mathematics (CPM). The paper then evaluates and synthesizes the lessons learned from documented implementations of such reform-based curricula and personal experience. This literature review provides the basis for suggestions for promoting equitable learning opportunities for students in the practice of teaching math. The paper concludes with an example of an Algebra I instructional sequence and assessment on solving systems of linear equations demonstrating these principles of promoting equity in the math classroom.