In an opinion piece for the New York Times on Sunday, political science professor Andrew Hacker asks,...
“'Is Algebra Necessary?' and answers, “No.” It’s not just algebra: geometry and calculus are on the chopping block, too. It’s not that he doesn’t think math is important; he wants the traditional sequence to be replaced by a general “quantitative skills” class, and perhaps some statistics.
“Quite a few people have responded to Hacker’s column already. I highly recommend these posts by Rob Knop, Daniel Willingham, and RiShawn Biddle.
“There are so many problems with Hacker’s essay that it’s hard to know where to start. Hacker’s first main point is that math is difficult, and the poor grades that result prevent too many people from graduating high school or college. His second is that the math we learn is not the math we need in our jobs.”