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The old "new math" in city schools

Educators have been worrying about American students’ math performance for decades. 1939 saw the introduction of innovative teaching techniques to some New York City math classrooms: Rather than learning “to compute for the sake of computation,” students learned arithmetic by applying it to baseball statistics, electrical bills, and other real-life situations, “informal, human and vital.”

At the time, some claimed students’ failure in high school math classes could be attributed to Regents exams:

On the high school level, where algebra, geometry, and trigonometry are still rigid, formalized subjects, a 25 percent failure record still exists. Officials have blamed the Regents examinations, in part, for this condition.

The rest of the article is after the jump.

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