National Math Festival Policy Day: Building the Profession of Math Teachers in America

On April 18, the National Math Festival comes to Washington, D.C., inspiring people of all ages with activities that demonstrate the beauty, fun, and importance of math.

Two days before the fun starts--on April 16--educators and policymakers will gather on Capitol Hill for the National Math Festival's Policy Day, which includes timely conversations about what it takes to build a world-class corps of math teachers in America.

Courtesy of Math for America

Here's what's on tap for the Policy Day:

At this breakfast briefing, members of Congress and staffers will gather to learn about current programs and legislative proposals to support math teacher training and professional development.

Speakers include:

Al Cuoco, distinguished scholar/advisor at the Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), will share the findings of a new report about how to design higher quality math programs that will inspire students.

John Ewing, president of Math for America, will share best practices from two exemplary programs: Math For America and Park City Mathematics Institute.

U.S. Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) will discuss the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which Congress may choose to reauthorize this year, and current legislation he has co-sponsored with U.S. Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.) to support and invest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teachers.

Patrick Honner, public speaker and award-winning math teacher at Brooklyn Technical High School, will share his thoughts on designing professional development opportunities to reward and cultivate exceptional math teachers.

Math Education Forum: Finding Common Ground in Math Education: Where We've Been, Where We Are, Where We're Going

After lunch, the day wraps up with a forum on math education. The forum will feature a series of thought-provoking discussions about college and career ready standards by an impressive cadre of national experts.

The agenda includes:

Reforming School Mathematics: A Tour of America's Past

Taking Stock of States and Standards in 2015: How Common are We? 

  • Mike Petrilli, President, Thomas B. Fordham Institute
  • Scott Norton, Strategic Initiative Director, Standards, Assessment, and Accountability, Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)

Standards and Curriculum: What's the Difference?

William G. McCallum, University Distinguished Professor of Mathematics, University of Arizona

Teaching as Professional Work

Deborah Ball, Dean, School of Education; William H. Payne Collegiate Professor in Education; and Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, University of Michigan

Challenges of Educating Underserved Populations (Panel)

Juliet Stipeche, Assistant Secretary, District VIII, Houston Independent School District

Peggy Brookins, Math Teacher at Forest High School in Ocala, Florida; Executive Vice President, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards; and Member of the President's Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans

Closing Remarks

Lillian Lowery, Ed.D., State Superintendent of Schools, Maryland

The National Math Festival's Policy Day is organized by the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute (MSRI) and the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS).

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