COMET • Vol. 5, No. 21 – 17 September 2004


(1) Field Review Draft of the Mathematics Framework for California Public Schools Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve

Source: Tom Adams, Director, Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division and Executive Secretary, Curriculum Development and Supplemental Materials Commission


[Letter sent to Education Association and Organization Leaders on 9 September 2004]

The California Department of Education (CDE) and the Curriculum and Supplemental Materials Commission are conducting a field review of the draft version of the Mathematics Framework for California Public Schools Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve.  The draft Mathematics Framework and the survey form are posted on the CDE website at for public comment.  The document will remain available online through November 9, 2004.  At the end of the field review period, survey results will be collected and presented to the Curriculum Commission.

Please encourage your members to review the document and submit field review comments using the online survey. The draft Mathematics Framework is a revision of the 2000 Mathematics Framework (not a complete re-write). It includes two new appendices (Appendices E and F), one revised appendix (Appendix A), and five revised chapters (Chapters 2, 3, 5, 6, and 10); other sections of the Framework are essentially unchanged from the 2000 version.

Field review copies of the draft Mathematics Framework and survey form have also been sent to Learning Resources Display Centers (LRDC) throughout California.  Individuals may prefer to go to one of these centers to review the Mathematics Framework.  For contact information and locations of the LRDCs, please refer to the CDE website at

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Mary Sprague, Consultant, Instructional Resources Unit at (916) 319-0510 or, or Donald Kairott, Manager of the Curriculum Frameworks Unit at (916) 319-0666 or

(2) How California Ranks: A Look at the State’s Investment in K-12 Education over the Past Decade

Source: EdSource – 15 September 2004


During the 1990s, California’s student population not only grew, but grew faster than the rest of the state’s population. And by the end of the decade, K-12 students were more likely to be English learners and low-income. Meanwhile, teacher salaries increased, but expenditures per pupil remained below the national average. Faced with more students and higher personnel costs, school districts have made ends meet by limiting the number of certified personnel. Thus, California public schools have fewer teachers, administrators, principals, counselors, and librarians per child than any other state except Utah.

These facts and more can be found in this four-page publication. It offers a national comparison of the state’s investment in its schools based on both National Education Association (NEA) and National Center of Education Statistics (NCES) data. This issue of Rankings also takes a look back in time to see how the state’s expenditures compare to a decade ago.

(3) Conference Calendar

Source: California Department of Education


This Web site contains information about education conferences scheduled during 2004 and 2005 in California and across the nation. Links to conference web pages are included.


 (1) “A World Of Difference: Classrooms Abroad Provide Lessons in Teaching Math and Science” by James Hiebert and James W. Stigler

Source: The National Staff Development Council (via Joni Falk, TERC)


The National Staff Development Council (NSDC) is the largest non-profit professional association committed to ensuring success for all students through staff development and school improvement.

The Council views high quality staff development programs as essential to creating schools in which all students and staff members are learners who continually improve their performance.

One of the Council’s publications is the Journal of Staff Development (JSD). The theme of the Fall 2004 issue of JSD is “Mathematics and Science.” Several of the articles in this issue are available online to nonmembers (see for the table of contents).

One of the online articles in this issue is “A World Of Difference: Classrooms Abroad Provide Lessons in Teaching Math and Science” by James Hiebert and James W. Stigler. Below is an excerpt from this article:

“…In summary, the findings of the TIMSS 1999 Video Study show that different high-achieving countries have chosen different levels of emphasis with regard to skills vs. understanding. These results suggest that the exact amount of time spent on these learning goals is not the critical factor. Rather, the results suggest that some time should be devoted to practicing skills and some time devoted to developing understanding. U.S. teachers already provide practice on skills. This now needs to be balanced with solving challenging problems and discussing the relationships that can be constructed among the mathematical facts, procedures, and ideas. When working on these problems, teachers must learn how to avoid stepping in and giving the answers, and instead provide students with opportunities to think more deeply about mathematical concepts and then discuss these concepts or relationships with the students…”

(2) “Leading the Way“-Live online chat today from 2-3 p.m. ET

Source: Education Week


Please join us on Friday, September 17, from 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. Eastern Time, for a live Web chat on the changing roles of school leaders and the challenges they face today.

Responding to new pressures, a growing number of states and school districts are re-engineering school principals’ jobs to emphasize their roles as instructional leaders, according to “Leading for Learning,” an Education Week special report issued this week ( Yet many principals still find their days consumed with administrative demands and feel ill-situated to carry out the kind of organizational change needed to significantly improve a school’s performance.

This online chat will explore these issues and more.


* Carole Kennedy is the principal-in-residence at the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards in Arlington, Va. She served 38 years as a teacher and principal in Missouri public schools, and was the president of the National Association of Elementary School Principals from 1996-97. She is currently a member of the Wallace Funds Leaders Count Advisory Committee, the Appalachian Math and Science Project Advisory Board, the National School Public Relations Association Board, and the Institute for Educational Leadership e-Lead Advisory Board, as well as other state and national committees.

* Jeff Archer, an associate editor for Education Week, is the primary author of the “Leading for Learning” report. He covered school-leadership issues for the newspaper for the past two years.

Please join us for this special event. Submit questions here:

No special equipment other than Internet access is needed to participate in this text-based chat. A transcript of the chat will be posted shortly after its completion.

(3) FLAMeS (Future Leaders Annual Meeting Support) and CAPE (Conference Attendance for Prospective Educators) Awards

Source: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics



The Mathematics Education Trust will fund travel, subsistence expenses, and substitute teacher costs of up to $1,200 for K-12 classroom teachers to attend the 2005 NCTM Annual Meeting in Anaheim ( Applicants must be members of NCTM and have never attended an NCTM annual meeting. In addition, applicants must:

(a) have taught at least three and no more than ten years prior to the 2004-2005 school year. Secondary school teachers must be teaching mathematics for at least 50 percent of their 2004-2005 schedule;

(b) have earned at least a bachelor’s degree; and

(c) be teaching at the time of the application and anticipate teaching during the following school year.

Awardees will be required to submit a report on their experiences at the annual meeting, including possible applications to their teaching assignment, along with their request for reimbursement.

Full-time undergraduate or graduate students committed to teaching mathematics at the elementary, middle, or high school level are eligible to apply for a $1200 grant to attend the NCTM Annual Conference in Anaheim or an NCTM regional meeting through the CAPE (Conference Attendance for Prospective Educators) Awards program.

Application packets for each award (FLAMeS, CAPE) must be postmarked by December 3, 2004. Faxed copies will not be accepted. Visit the Web sites above for proposal requirements.