ALBANY, N.Y. June 12, 2007 - Rising math scores at every grade level are a hopeful sign that New York's continued investment in research-proven reforms is working, New York State United Teachers said today.
"Teaching children in smaller classes and using curriculum that is backed by research are reforms that work, and we see evidence of that in rising math scores at every grade level," said NYSUT President Richard C. Iannuzzi. "These results are another sign that efforts to raise achievement are taking hold."
Iannuzzi noted that, "What is significant today is that the gains are spread across every grade level throughout the state, and are in double-digits in New York City, and in sixth- and seventh-grade," he said.
NYSUT Vice President Maria Neira said the significant rise in sixth- and seventh-grade scores is an indicator that efforts to improve middle-level education are starting to pay off. "Teachers have been more heavily involved in the state's efforts to revamp the math curriculum, particularly in the middle grades, and the teamwork involved in that is starting to pay dividends," she said.
"Nearly three-quarters of New York's students are now meeting high standards in math," Neira added. "That's a good news story that parents, policymakers and business leaders should cheer."
Neira noted the math scores are the latest in a flurry of gains in public education. Last month, the state Education Department recognized 1,658 schools as "high-performing, gap-closing" schools for their academic progress and acknowledged 220 schools as "rapidly improving." On top of that, a record 95.3 percent of school budgets passed on the first vote May 15.
"New Yorkers understand that education is an investment in the future of our state's children," Neira said.
NYSUT, the state's largest union, represents more than 585,000 classroom teachers and other school employees; faculty and other professionals at the state's community colleges; State University of New York and City University of New York; and other education and health professionals. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers; National Education Association and AFL-CIO.