Maths criticism does not add up

18th February 2000 at 00:00
FALLING off the edge of page 27 of last week's TES (February 4) was a book review that should have made the front page.

Teachers have been castigated for more than two years over our poor levels of mathematical education and our "long tail" of underachieving children in comparison with many other countries in Europe and the Far East.

The truth, as described in Comparing Standards Internationally (Symposium Books) bears repeating: German 13-year-olds did far worse than the British as thelowest performing 27 per cent were removed from the sample; in the Netherlands, 17 per cent attend special schools which were excluded from the survey; our performance was in fact similar to most European or Anglophone countries; Japanese children excel by the age of 13, but have spent twice as many hours learning maths as English children.

How can research as misleading as the TIMSS analyses become the false basis for judgments and development work?

Name and address supplied

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now