ARMAGH — The United School District’s education director presented a brief layout of the math curriculum during a special budget meeting Tuesday.
The remainder of the meeting was spent in executive session for staffing discussions.
Patricia Berezansky presented in binders given to each board member a vision of what should be taught based on the new common core standards for math for kindergarten through eighth grade and Algebra I.
She’s predicting a budget of $90,000 to $100,000 for the replacement of textbooks to the common core standards, about half of her original $200,000 request, but she said it’s a rough estimate because only one company has been interviewed so far.
A second interview is scheduled for today, she said this morning.
Berezansky said starting last year, she began working with the math teachers to go through a process of looking at what they are currently doing and how that aligns to the common core standards, as far as what needs to change.
The K-5 curriculum still uses a program called Investigations, a lot of which Berezansky said is not aligned with the common core.
She said teachers were asked to begin mapping their curriculum “at the common core – what should be taught at their grade levels” based on the new standards. Berezansky reiterated that United currently is teaching the PA standards, and that her presentation was a vision of “what we’re hoping to go to.”
Board President Don Davis asked if Berezansky had a timeline of when the department was expected to transition to the common core standards, to which she said the hope was for the upcoming school year.
Berezansky also said the common core standards are “more rigorous” than the PA standards.
“The time in which you are to have mastery of various subjects has actually been bumped down,” she said, adding that it “thinned out a little bit of what (the students) are doing.”
As an example, she said, under the PA standards kindergarten students need to have probability and statistics, where they go around and take surveys. The common core “really bases it on number sense and number theory and such,” Berezansky said.
Berezansky said this morning that the higher-level, senior-high math curriculum will be looked at the following year to see if those books align to the common core standards or if they will need replaced. English K-12 will also be looked at.