WASHINGTON – After data from Montgomery County Public Schools showed a high number of students failed their semester finals in math, despite most passing classes as a whole, the school system announced it will form a group to address the issue.
In terms of numbers, of 19,000 students taking end-of-semester exams, 11,000 failed.
According to superintendent Dr. Joshua Starr, the school system knows math has been a problem for a long time and it will be given a close look. Starr says one possibility for the failures is that curriculum doesn’t line up with the county-generated tests.
“Certainly curriculum alignment is one piece, student motivation is another, teacher preparation,” he explains.
However, there is a problem with the curriculum alignment theory since most students take algebra 1 in middle school. At that level, there isn’t the same rate of failure.
“So that would suggest there’s not a curriculum and test alignment issue,” Starr says.
The work to look into the data and address the issues will begin in June.
WTOP’s Kate Ryan contributed to this report.