Published July 13, 2023
On July 12th, the California State Board of Education (SBE) voted to adopt the 2023 Mathematics Framework. But the fight is far from over. Although the framework is approved at the state level, it is important to keep in mind that it only offers guidelines and local school districts will have the ultimate decision-making authority to choose the best math curriculum.
Yesterday (July 12) evening, after concluding a 10-day public input period and listening to over 70 public comments at the hearing, the California State Board of Education (SBE) voted to adopt the 2023 Mathematics Framework. In spite of testimonies from experts and parents who question its scientific evidence and ideological underpinnings, California's educrats are now poised to push forward an equity-based, anti-merit and purely experimental math framework.
But the fight is far from over. Although the framework is approved at the state level, it is important to keep in mind that it only offers guidelines and local school districts will have the ultimate decision-making authority to choose the best math curriculum. Since 2021, CFER has worked diligently to promote public awareness about the new math framework through advocacy, alliance building and research. Several of the 60 callers that gave public comments at the SBE meeting voiced their opposition in response to CFER's action alert. We sincerely thank you for your participation, which will help inspire more to get involved at the local level! CFER's Wenyuan Wu also testified in opposition:
"This deeply flawed framework will only exacerbate the problem of low performance by dumbing down academic standards and obsessing over ideological devices like social justice and equity."
Shockingly, at the public hearing, SBE President Linda Darling-Hammond accused the opposition of "circulating misinformation" about the math framework because we have not read the materials "twice or three times." However, it is a fact, exposed by many math and STEM experts, that the new math framework discourages 8th graders from taking Algebra I, something the SBE denies. The framework recommends that "all students take the same rich mathematics courses in kindergarten through grade eight" (Chapter 10, Lines 808-810), while Algebra I is not listed for Grade 8 (Chapters 8 and 9). It is unbelievable that Dr. Darling-Hammond and the education bureaucrats would lie to promote a political agenda!
California's journey to adopt equity math is a snapshot of our culture war. While academics and experts, including two Stanford math professors and a UC Berkeley STEM professor, spoke about the framework's myriad of problems, interest groups like the California Teachers Association and the Education Trust-West weighed in to support equity math.
Going forward, we will continue to work with our partners and local stakeholders to closely monitor the implementation of the 2023 math framework. We will help parents, community members and local education leaders to advocate for rigorous math standards and curriculums that promote excellence and merit for all students. Please stay tuned and continue to support our work!
CFER's upcoming annual conference will provide a platform to connect national and state experts with local parents and activists. In the spirit of continuing to fight, I want to announce that we are running a $90 registration special between now and July 28 for CFER's annual conference on August 12 to celebrate the overturning of race-based affirmative action in the recent Supreme Court ruling in the Harvard and UNC cases. Please utilize this opportunity and sign up to join us in August in beautiful San Diego, if you haven't already done so. SFFA President Mr. Edward Blum will be our keynote speaker and many other leaders will also join us to talk about their success stories and experiences in fighting the culture war. You can check out detailed information about the event including the agenda and speakers here.
About Californians for Equal Rights Foundation (CFER):We are a non-partisan and non-profit organization established following the defeat of Proposition 16 in 2020, with a mission to defend and raise public awareness on the cause of equal rights through public education, civic engagement and community outreach. In 1996, California became the first U.S. state to amend its constitution by passing Proposition 209 to ban racial discrimination and preferences. Prop. 209 requires that “the state shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.” CFER is dedicated to educating the public on this important constitutional principle of equal treatment.