PACE Event

Mathematics Course-Taking in California’s Middle and High Schools

Patterns and Implications
Neal Finkelstein, WestEd

The sequence of math courses that students take in their middle school years, and the degree to which they master critical math knowledge and skills in those courses, are strong predictors of how well students will do in high school and of how likely they are to complete California’s A-G requirements.

As California moves to implement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Math the question of when to introduce key math content has taken on even greater importance, as the CCSS significantly increase expectations for mathematical learning among middle grades students while simultaneously limiting the expectation that all students will take Algebra in the eighth grade.

In this seminar, Neal Finkelstein will report findings from a recent comprehensive transcript study on the math pathways that students follow in California, and explore the implications of those findings for developing effective course sequences and placement strategies in the context of CCSS implementation.