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New math curriculum for students

By Chris Jones/The Oshawa Express

Elementary students will be seeing a new math curriculum in September.

The new curriculum was developed over two years by the provincial government in consultation with parents, math teachers, and other experts.

According to a press release from the province, it is “designed to reverse a decade of declining math scores.”

New aspects of the curriculum include mandatory classes which focus on financial literacy concepts, and will teach students the value and use of money.

Beginning in Grade 1, teachers will also be giving classes on coding and computer programming.

According to at statement from the Durham District School Board’s (DDSB) Communications and Public Relations Department, teachers will analyze the new curriculum, and will design “engaging courses” based on the Ministry of Education’s new expectations.

“The DDSB curriculum department will work with teachers through the process to support the best interests of students,” says the statement.

The statement also says the board will continue to support teachers and students as they learn about coding.

“Coding as outlined in the new math curriculum will be implemented in a variety of ways that integrates different expectations,” reads the statement. “Many teachers in the DDSB have been using a hands-on approach to coding with the use of robotics.”

Several “professional learning days” have also been scheduled prior to students returning to school.

“While our focus next year is the health and safety of our students and staff during the pandemic and anti-racism education, we will also provide opportunities for educators to engage in learning related to the new curriculum.”

The new math curriculum is expected to cost the Ministry of Education an additional $999,000.

“One of the best parts of our profession, next to working with young people, is working together collaboratively with colleagues,” says the statement. “While it is a challenge when a new curriculum is released at the end of the school year, we look forward to planning with administrators and school teams to develop supports and implementation plans for the new curriculum in the months ahead.”