Opening the second day of the workshop, Susan Bickerstaff provided an overview of the topics and themes explored on the first day of the workshop. Workshop participants were introduced to a variety of reform strategies that are being implemented across the United States to improve student outcomes in mathematics (see Chapter 2), and they were presented with the evidence base to justify the adoption of these strategies (see Chapter 3). She observed that two central themes surfaced during these discussions: (1) the importance of faculty understanding the desired outcomes of their work, which include ensuring that students learn quantitative skills to be successful in their programs and careers, helping students develop their mathematical identities and find the joy in mathematics, providing students with viable pathways to careers of interest, and raising students’ expectations of themselves and their capacities; and (2) classroom-level instruction is a promising area for future research, given the significant gains in student success that have been made with little to no large-scale change at the classroom level and the substantial portion of students who are not successful even in these new reform contexts.
The first day of the workshop also included interactive breaks, which afforded time and space for participants to discuss approaches to reforming developmental mathematics that had not yet been highlighted in the workshop and to identify approaches that, in their opinion, the field should try in order to increase student success in developmental mathematics. Bickerstaff shared excerpts from various whiteboard posts that emerged during these informal conversations. One participant reiterated that “negative math experiences leave an emotional trauma on the student,” while
another participant urged that students should be thought of as “producers of information” instead of “consumers of information.” A third participant suggested that because “cultural capital is important in native communities for success in school, language and culture should be integrated with the curriculum as much as possible.” Regarding students who might not yet be achieving success, another workshop participant referenced programs at Wright State University and at Indian River College that contextualize mathematics instruction in terms of individual disciplines. Similarly, another participant suggested that students should “learn the math after understanding the reason or importance to achieve their goal.” Lastly, a participant expressed the need for the mathematics education community to “understand the impact of real-life issues for many developmental education students by combining efforts like single-stop or other holistic approaches with developmental mathematics reform to address the students who are still not succeeding.” Reflecting on these contributions, Bickerstaff indicated how much time and how many resources are needed to implement these approaches—to curate and cultivate high-quality instructional materials, for faculty to have the reflective space and support to change their interactions with students, and to increase knowledge for the high proportion of part-time faculty of the college curriculum, student supports on campus, and the campus resources to support faculty.
Moving into the first panel of the second day of the workshop, Bickerstaff posed the following questions to serve as a guide for workshop participants:
- How do we increase access to approaches that we know improve student outcomes?
- How do we build on successes to meet the needs of students who continue to be left behind?
She expressed hoped that, during the remaining sessions of the workshop, participants would consider how to “center the student experience in mathematics.” She suggested that the next phase of research should continue to identify limitations in the system, including the student groups that are not being well served; build faculty capacity for meeting students’ needs; help understand something new about students’ experiences, especially how they are learning; and illuminate key features of high-quality implementation of the most promising reforms, which is discussed in the following section.
A DEEPER LOOK AT FOUR PROMISING MODELS FOR CHANGE
Tristan Denley noted that this session of the workshop would emphasize strategies to put the theory of reform into action. He moderated a panel discussion that explored four specific models of transformation in developmental mathematics education: (1) the University System of Georgia’s adoption of the co-requisite model, (2) The University of Texas at Austin’s creation of the Dana Center Mathematics Pathways, (3) the City University of New York’s (CUNY’s) conception of its innovative CUNY Start program, and (4) Carnegie’s development of the Statway and Quantway mathematics pathways. These new models include changes in course structure, in curricular structure, in how faculty and administrators help students navigate the college experience, and in pedagogy, respectively. Denley presented four objectives for this panel discussion: (1) identify what is known about these strategies, (2) share challenges in bringing these programs to scale, (3) describe the potential of scaling these programs even further, and (4) define what is known about students who are and are not being well served by these new models.1
The Co-requisite Model
Denley explained that developmental education reform should enable students to be more successful in mathematics and to more successfully complete college. In a study of all University System of Georgia students, he found that students who passed their first credit-bearing mathematics and English courses during their first year of college had 6-year graduation rates twice that of their peers who passed only one or the other in the first year and 10 times that of their peers who completed neither course successfully in the first year.
In 2015, the University System of Georgia offered three approaches to developmental mathematics education: (1) the traditional developmental mathematics sequence; (2) the foundations model, in which students had to complete a semester-long remediation course successfully before enrolling in a college-level course; and (3) the co-requisite model, in which students enroll directly in a credit-bearing college mathematics course in their first year while also being required to enroll in an aligned supplementary instruction course.
Denley said that traditional structures of developmental mathematics create a barrier to student success. When the co-requisite model was fully
1 Background resources on these models can be found at https://sites.nationalacademies.org/DBASSE/BOSE/devmathhandouts/index.htm.
implemented across community colleges in Tennessee in 2015–2016, 55 percent of students successfully completed a credit-bearing mathematics course in the first year. Previously, when students were placed in developmental mathematics first before being able to complete a college-level mathematics course, the success rate in the credit-bearing course was only 12.3 percent. Thus, in the year that the co-requisite model went to scale, more students passed a college-level mathematics class in Tennessee community colleges than in the previous 3 years combined. The University System of Georgia has been experiencing similar gains across the preparation spectrum with its implementation of the co-requisite model. Figure 4-1 shows that from a sample size of nearly 30,000 students in the University System of Georgia, the success rates in credit-bearing mathematics courses increased substantially across the preparation spectrum. For example, for students with an ACT mathematics subscore of 14, the success rate increased from 9 percent in 2013 to 56 percent with the implementation of the co-requisite model in 2015–2017. For students with an ACT mathematics subscore of 18, the success rate increased from 30 to 63 percent.2
Denley explained that these gains also hold true across student subpopulations (e.g., for Pell Grant recipients and African American students), essentially eliminating equity gaps. This demonstrates that students tend to succeed when remediation is provided in a just-in-time, parallel fashion, instead of when it is front loaded as a prerequisite course, he continued. Regarding student success rates in concurrent reforms such as mathematics pathways, he noted that more students take and pass precalculus after the co-requisite college algebra class (19% and 66%, respectively) than in the foundational model (7% and 47%, respectively). Moreover, when considering the fact that some of the students within the foundations model population also had to get through another prerequisite course first, the exponential decay effect becomes evident as one moves toward the credit-bearing course level, similar to what Angela Boatman’s work showed (see Chapter 3, Figure 3-4). Owing to the success of the co-requisite model and its ability to “unlock the promise” of many of the other kinds of reforms, all 26 campuses in the University System of Georgia offered only the co-requisite model for developmental mathematics (and English) education as of Fall 2018.
Dana Center Mathematics Pathways
Amy Getz stated that after listening to the discussions among participants throughout the first day of the workshop, she changed her
2 According to Zachry Rutschow (2019), a score lower than 19 on the ACT generally indicates that a student is in need of additional skill development prior to being ready for college-level coursework.
presentation title to “Three reasons why this should be the last event that has the word ‘developmental mathematics’ in the title.” She explained that the phrase “developmental mathematics” is problematic and should be eliminated from the lexicon of the mathematics education community. First, it implies that targeting and addressing only one small aspect of a student’s education can alter the course of his/her future. Second, evidence has shown that traditional approaches to developmental mathematics are ineffective, especially given that both identifying and measuring college readiness is not well understood (Liston and Getz, 2019). Third, the concept of developmental mathematics creates more inequities in a system already filled with inequities. It is important to move to a scale of transformative education that benefits and provides “meaningful learning experiences” to all students, she explained.
Getz highlighted the benefits of the “mathematics pathways” perspective, which focuses on where students are coming from and where they would like to go. A pathways approach requires an understanding of students’ strengths and previous experiences; faculty can then design intentional learning experiences to help students achieve their career goals (see Figure 4-2). The Dana Center Mathematics Pathways (DCMP) are based on four principles: (1) all students enter directly into mathematics pathways aligned to their programs of study; (2) courses are structured so that all students, regardless of college readiness, complete their first college-level mathematics requirement in the first year of college; (3) strategies to support students as learners should be integrated into courses and aligned across the institution; and (4) instruction should be based on evidence-based curriculum and pedagogy.3 The first two principles are focused on structure, and the latter are centered on continuous improvement to ensure effective high-quality instruction. Additionally, Getz explained that these principles are “student-centered, faculty-led, administrator-supported, policy-enabled, and culturally reinforced.”
Getz recognized that implementation will vary across institutions, so standards that guide the design of successful reform and empower local leaders to tailor approaches to the needs of their students would be beneficial. Both structural and policy changes are needed quickly and at scale (Charles A. Dana Center, 2018), she continued. Getz reiterated that to be equipped to adopt new approaches that better serve students, faculty and administrators have to be willing to continually learn from data, which ensures that ineffective practices do not become embedded in the system. For instance, the DCMP started out with a 1-year model, but after looking
at the data and determining that there was a better way to serve students, the approach was changed to a one-semester model.
Jeanette Kim, interim university assistant dean for Pre-Matriculation Programs and Program Assessment at CUNY, described her institution as the largest urban university system in the United States, with 25 campuses and more than 240,000 undergraduates—97,000 of whom are seeking associate’s degrees. She noted that more than 58 percent of CUNY’s students are black or Hispanic, 40 percent have household incomes below $20,000,
and 65 percent of first-time associate degree students have one or more remedial needs. Kim discussed several steps toward remediation reform that CUNY is taking, including the expansion of co-requisites and the elimination of traditional placement testing. Her presentation highlighted the CUNY Start program, which allows students to take advantage of the prematriculation space to address their remedial needs.
The CUNY Start program provides intensive preparation in reading, writing, mathematics, and college success to students who are admitted to CUNY but whose ACCUPLACER4 test scores indicate significant need for remediation. These students defer matriculation for one semester while beginning the program for a low fee as either full-time students (25 hours per week for $75) or part-time students (12 hours per week for $35), over a semester, a summer, or a series of 8-week intensive sessions. One intensive adviser is assigned to every 25 students, with the goal of preparing them academically, socially, and emotionally for college. Faculty are trained via apprenticeship models, and the CUNY Start program is coordinated through a central office. CUNY Start has been implemented at seven community colleges and three senior colleges—the annual CUNY Start enrollment of approximately 4,300 students is 57 percent female, 78 percent black and Hispanic, and 75 percent under age 24. The CUNY Start mathematics program focuses specifically on developing students’ growth mindsets, promoting conceptual understanding, and emphasizing collaborative learning. Upon completion of the program, students take the CUNY elementary algebra final exam, which is a systemwide exit standard for remediation; this consistent measure demonstrates that CUNY Start students are held to the same standards as other CUNY students, Kim explained.
Kim believes that CUNY Start has been successful because it eliminates or reduces students’ remedial needs before they matriculate into their degree programs (see Figure 4-3), saves financial aid for credit-bearing coursework, demands intensive cohort-based learning, exposes students to highly trained faculty and advisers, and increases the likelihood that students will persist and graduate. She shared the findings of an ongoing MDRC study of the first 9 years of the CUNY Start program, which revealed that CUNY Start students made more progress through their remedial requirements than the control students, especially in mathematics (Scrivener et al., 2018). She also highlighted data from a quasi-experimental analysis that revealed that CUNY Start students were outperforming the matched comparison group in both credit-bearing English and mathematics courses, and this advantage was maintained after 2 years (see Jenkins Webber, 2018).
4 ACCUPLACER diagnostic assessments identify the knowledge, strength, and needs of students in math, reading, and writing, for placement into classes that match students’ skill levels. For more information on ACCUPLACER, see https://accuplacer.collegeboard.org.
Kim mentioned that now that the program has proven successful for students with deep remedial needs, CUNY is working to identify other populations it is not yet serving. It is engaging with nontraditional students, including precollege populations, returning adult learners, and students who have achieved high school equivalency but have failed certain mathematics requirements. CUNY Start is also trying to identify students who have failed traditional developmental mathematics courses twice in order to provide these students with the needed supports to avoid being dismissed from the institution. Lastly, CUNY Start is creating a pipeline for students to move into CUNY Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (see Chapter 2 and Chapter 5) to continue to receive intensive wraparound support as they move toward college completion.
Carnegie Mathematics Pathways (Statway and Quantway)
Karon Klipple, executive director of the Carnegie Mathematics Pathways at WestEd, shared that of the 1.1 million first-time students enrolling in community college each year, 60 percent are placed in remedial mathematics courses, and only 20 percent will ever complete a single college-level mathematics course. In 2010, the Carnegie Foundation for the
Advancement of Teaching5 convened researchers, practitioners, faculty, and students to consider this problem in developmental education and create a holistic solution. The solution addressed the structure of developmental mathematics education, challenged the notion of what mathematics content students need to learn and when they need to learn it, and engaged students in “relevant and meaningful” mathematics “in a way that supported active, collaborative learning where they could bring their own experiences to bear on solving a problem.” She highlighted the many factors beyond mathematics content and instruction that can affect student success (e.g., a student’s mindset about his/her mathematical abilities and a student’s sense of belonging in both the mathematics classroom and on the college campus). With this in mind, she continued, comprehensive supports were needed to prepare faculty to teach in a new way, as well as collective action to ensure continuous improvement over time based on what the data revealed.
As a result of this effort, two mathematics pathways were created by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching: Statway and Quantway. Approximately 100 institutions and 40,000 students have been involved in this reform. According to Klipple, the programs generate triple the success in half the time (see Figure 4-4) as traditional approaches to developmental education, with 70 percent of the pathways students earning college-level credits. These results hold across all racial, ethnic, and gender subgroups. Statway and Quantway students also succeed with higher grades in upper-division mathematics courses, which indicates that there is a deeper level of learning happening in the pathways programs, she continued. These students are also earning 4-year degrees at more than two times the rate of their matched peers.
Klipple emphasized that there are still approximately 500,000 students enrolled in traditional developmental mathematics sequences annually who
5 The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching aims to build a field around the use of improvement science and networked improvement communities to solve longstanding inequities in educational outcomes. For more information, see https://www.carnegiefoundation.org.
are unable to continue in college and achieve their career goals. She said that the mathematics education community has a moral imperative to reform developmental education and eliminate its barriers to success.
Presenters discussed the challenges that arise when taking these strategies to scale. One common experience across the models was that access to and an understanding of data were key in persuading institutions and faculty to implement mathematics education reforms. Getz noted that many states do not have ready access to data or a system to support cross-institutional action, and it is important to think about different ways to navigate those problems. Coordinating action across multiple institutions is challenging, but it is necessary to promote student success throughout their college careers, given that students often transfer into and out of institutions along the way, she continued. Denley emphasized that creating a data structure to prove that the co-requisite model was effective had been necessary to motivate both the Tennessee community colleges and the University System of Georgia to adopt the approach. An institution’s ability to evaluate its own data, as opposed to looking at the data of students at other institutions, is necessary to design and execute programs in a way that will benefit an institution’s unique students, he explained. However, even with data, faculty remained skeptical about how the co-requisite approach would work for a variety of populations of students until a prototype was created in Tennessee. This prototype allowed faculty to learn lessons
quickly about a variety of issues (e.g., logistics, faculty recruitment, faculty training, etc.) in order to take the co-requisite model to scale.
Kim commented that in terms of scaling opportunities, the CUNY Start program’s challenge stems from the fact that it is based on referrals and students opt into the program. New strategies are needed to identify and enroll more students who would benefit from the program, taking into consideration the substantial time commitment that is required of them. Klipple emphasized the value of having champions across an institution—faculty can change what happens in the classroom and administrators can facilitate policies for hiring, advising, transfer, placement, evaluation, and resource allocation. These initiatives cannot be successful when individuals are running pilot programs; the work has to be institutionalized with the support of a broad group of stakeholders who are motivated by the data and inspired to make change, she continued. Still, she explained, challenges remain in understanding how to measure the success of reform efforts accurately, given the heterogeneity of the students being served, and how to help students who are still not succeeding even within these new contexts. Klipple asserted that some of these students might not be succeeding owing to a lack of support for the social-emotional component of learning. Denley agreed and noted that some students might not have developed a sense of social belonging and inclusion in their mathematics courses. Additionally, he shared that work is under way in Georgia to better understand the effects of academic mindset interventions, including social belonging strategies. Philip Uri Treisman suggested that workshop participants review the work of Catherine Good, of Baruch College, to better understand how the absence of a sense of belonging can negatively impact student success in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics pathways.
Several participants highlighted that discussions about student success in the era of reform often include concerns about academic rigor. Ann Sitomer, senior researcher at Oregon State University, said that she found it “difficult to believe that any co-requisite model leads to the outcomes presented by Denley.” She asked, “What are the mathematical features that lead to these outcomes?” Denley noted that the mathematics course in the co-requisite model is identical to the traditional credit-bearing course, and Klipple affirmed that these new mathematics education models have the same level of rigor and expectations for students as traditional credit-bearing courses. If the rigor is the same, Maxine Roberts wondered, what is it about the supports that are making such a difference in student success? Klipple emphasized that students are more accurately placed into these courses and are provided with the support they need to be successful in college-level mathematics. Furthermore, the problems they are learning to solve do not rely on disconnected, irrelevant mathematical concepts. The cohort structure is also particularly valuable in that it allows faculty to
assess and target students’ needs individually and offer the right supports, she continued. Denley asserted that having just-in-time remediation is more effective for students, and the co-requisite model eliminates the fundamental “othering” of being a developmental mathematics student, which can derail student success. Getz added that just-in-time remediation also better aligns course content.
Given Klipple’s revelation that 500,000 students are still not benefit-ting from reform efforts, Mark Green asked how members of academia, the National Academies, and professional societies could help to scale these efforts appropriately. Getz asserted, “We have to make it really clear that it is not acceptable to ignore data anymore; that is just professional malpractice.” She emphasized that professional societies have a strong role in setting standards about what it means to be a mathematics educator and in changing faculty mindsets. Treisman observed that some campuses are inappropriately applying reform language to describe traditional approaches, and he urged the mathematics education community to “mount a massive effort to set standards of responsible practice” to combat these inadequate strategies. Denley described an “astonishing change” in the messages around the different nonalgebra mathematics pathways following the work of Transforming Post-Secondary Education in Mathematics (TPSE), which has begun to work with the mathematics education community to develop content that is pertinent to students’ disciplines. Because TPSE, he continued, has endorsed the statistics and quantitative reasoning mathematics pathways, many of the narratives suggesting that these pathways are not synonymous with rigor have changed immeasurably. Denley also called on the mathematics community to similarly affirm the co-requisite model as the best way forward in mathematics education and the English community to undertake similar work. Julie Phelps added that the majority of submissions to the 2019 American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges Conference highlighted reformed approaches instead of traditional developmental mathematics—of the 300 proposals received, approximately 20 retained the traditional phrases “developmental education” or “remedial math.” Another indication that transformation is under way throughout the professional societies is the decision of the National Association for Developmental Education to change its name to the National Organization for Student Success, she continued.
SYNERGY OF MATHEMATICS REFORM EFFORTS AND OVERALL STRATEGIES TO TRANSFORM UNDERGRADUATE EDUCATION
As the discussion of scaling promising models for change continues, it is important to consider the larger-scale changes that are occurring within
and across undergraduate programs in U.S. postsecondary institutions, said Treisman. Serving as the moderator of the panel that discussed the synergy of mathematics reform efforts and overall strategies to transform undergraduate education, Treisman went on to say that the failure of developmental education is not a result of any failings on the part of people who have devoted their lives to supporting students. Instead, he described developmental education as a failed policy response to fundamental changes in higher education in the 1950s and 1960s, to the GI Bill, and to the civil rights movement, all of which dramatically increased enrollment in higher education. Additionally, he continued, the launch of the Soviet Union’s Sputnik 1 in the 1950s and international competitiveness put pressure on U.S. mathematics departments to produce high-end scientists.
Treisman explained that in his perspective reforms, to developmental mathematics education gained traction with the recession of 2008, when financial challenges and enrollment crises in the United States motivated institutions to focus on improving student success. At the same time, professional organizations began to change their standards of responsible practice, issuing strong policy statements that reinforced the mathematics pathways movement. He emphasized that reforms in mathematics education do not stand alone; they are happening in the context of fundamental changes in approaches to advising, student orientation, and financial aid. Therefore, he continued, there must be “mutually reinforcing synergy” with overall strategies to transform undergraduate education.
Treisman was joined on the panel by Nyema Mitchell, a senior program manager at Jobs for the Future, and Rahim Rajan, deputy director of the Postsecondary Division at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Mitchell’s work supports 16 Student Success Centers6 located across the country, which are scaling guided pathways programs in their respective states in the context of unique policy environments. Rajan works on a team that is concentrating on evidence-based interventions, practices, tools, and technologies to enhance student success and to erase equity gaps for students of color, low-income students, and adult learners.
Rajan explained that, in the past 10 years, the emphasis in higher education has shifted from access to success. Now, another shift is occurring toward understanding the markers of success, and now a holistic, comprehensive set of reforms and transformational strategies (e.g., in capacities, processes, and structures) need to be implemented to best serve students, he continued. The mathematics reforms discussed in the context of this workshop “are a part of a suite of efforts that fundamentally change the
6 For more information about these Student Success Centers, see https://www.jff.org/what-we-do/impact-stories/student-success-center-network.
normative practice on a campus,” but, Rajan continued, these efforts are insufficient. He asserted that this work is “fundamentally about improving the lives of Americans and overcoming poverty. And higher education is still that lever to do that, but it requires broad change and reform in order to really tap that potential for individuals.”
Treisman asked the panelists how their organizations’ supports have changed to reflect the shift from programmatic to systemic reforms as well as where more support is needed. Mitchell said that cross-sector partnerships are essential for understanding what kinds of change are supported by policy in each state. Thus, Jobs for the Future, she continued, has evolved to better assist the Student Success Centers in making data-informed decisions and positioning themselves to take advantage of the opportunities to institute reforms that will be taken up in their respective states. Rajan pointed to the Gates Foundation as an organization that takes a systems approach to address the kind of supports still needed in the field, and so co-invested in building a national network (e.g., Strong Start to Finish) that is focused on helping systems to scale their reforms. Acknowledging the efforts required to scale reforms, he added that no single funding entity can address this issue alone. Treisman asked the panelists to draw on their own experiences in helping to bring reforms to scale and to comment on the financial viability of these new models. Rajan expressed his disappointment that although it is more expensive for an institution to recruit new students than it is to help existing students succeed, reforms are still not being implemented at scale. This evidence justifies the need for institutions to invest in reform supports, such as integrated advising or social-emotional support, which will aid in student success, he continued.
Observing that systemic reforms depend on transfer and applicability policies, Treisman noted that a governance problem exists: institutions serving the same community of students (e.g., a high school and a community college located in the same town) lack a governing arrangement to allow for shared responsibility of this population. As a starting point to address this issue, Mitchell proposed the creation of additional infrastructure that states could use to exchange lessons learned while trying to overcome specific barriers during reform implementation. Following up on that concept, Treisman asked if there are emerging issues for undergraduate institutions more broadly, and Mitchell replied that offering courses that transfer from 2- to 4-year institutions remains a key barrier in helping students transition between campuses. Noting that 40 percent of community colleges in the state of Texas have high school students comprising 25 percent of their enrollment, Treisman reiterated that the boundaries between K–12 and higher education are fundamentally changing; he wondered about the leading edge of innovation to manage this transition and to align pathways. Rajan pointed to the University of Central Florida, which has partnerships
with the local community colleges, like Valencia College, and the Orange County Public School system, as an example of the deep integration that is necessary to structure and align pathways across systems. With this infrastructure, all parties are involved in the co-development of the pathways requirements. Students who graduate from an Orange County public high school can automatically enroll at Valencia College, and Valencia College graduates have automatic acceptance to the University of Central Florida. Mitchell added that lessons learned in Florida could be applicable in a number of other states but that broad-scale reform requires consideration of local and state-level politics.
When panelists invited workshop participants to share their commentary on the synergy between reforms in mathematics education and those in undergraduate education more broadly, Ted Coe, director of mathematics at Achieve, suggested that conversations about college readiness should align with discussions about career readiness (e.g., determining what mathematics courses might be needed by students in an associate’s program for future careers and spreading that message). Treisman agreed, noting that future careers could involve the sophisticated management of information (i.e., mathematical decision making) and the integration of computation (e.g., computing, statistical ideas, and mathematical analysis from algebra, calculus, etc.). For those who might cross industry sectors, Treisman continued, generalized problem solving will become increasingly important, as will the ability to develop quantitative competence through continued learning. Tatiana Melguizo said that it is essential to think about establishing “regions or corridors of success” (i.e., introducing the idea of guided pathways across sectors beginning with a large high school district, then moving to community colleges, and finally to 4-year institutions) when thinking about systemic reform. This approach would increase cross-sector collaboration to design courses, which might in turn decrease trust issues among faculty. Rajan added that when connecting these sectors, it is crucial not to overlook the students, especially students of color or low-income students who might have only one chance at higher education. Emphasizing that sometimes the best efforts can have adverse equity effects when changes are not implemented at scale, Treisman suggested building a pathway for students from the junior year of high school to the junior year of college that reflects the best mathematics (e.g., integrated use of computing, analysis, and statistics) that is oriented and organized around the future work that they will do in their careers. This would ensure that students have opportunities to be exposed early to coursework in emerging fields, such as big data, which might not be offered at all community colleges, he continued.
In closing the panel discussion, Rajan asked workshop participants how philanthropic organizations could be supportive of the remaining
work needed to transform developmental mathematics education. Cammie Newmyer urged philanthropists to direct their attention toward rural areas and other pockets of high poverty. Getz commented that philanthropic organizations could help institutions access data and develop resources to track data over time. John Hetts added that support is needed to conduct more qualitative research, alongside the quantitative work, to evaluate the fidelity of reform implementations. Vilma Mesa requested that philanthropists lobby for increased education appropriations from the states to implement reforms at scale. Denley agreed that investments are needed to change the paradigm of developmental mathematics education. April Strom, professor of mathematics at Chandler–Gilbert Community College and a vice president of the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges, suggested funding for community college faculty to engage in partnerships with K–12 faculty and to support the development of K–16 professional development centers. Phelps agreed that community college faculty should be supported to engage in these conversations and to help design reform implementation strategies. Linda Braddy asked philanthropists to help raise awareness, especially among faculty and administrators, about the equity agenda. Treisman concluded by saying that the current role of philanthropy is to think about the “innovation that is needed at the current and next stages of this reform and how philanthropy can finish a set of initiatives that it [already] initiated, rather than just starting [new ones].”
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