OK, Dear Readers, turn off the footy and/or the cricket. You have work to do.
We have written before of VCAA‘s manipulative “review” of Victoria’s senior mathematics curriculum, complete with scale-thumbing, push-polling and hidden, hand-picked “experts”. Now, according to their latest Bulletin,
[t]he VCAA will undertake a second phase of Stage 1 consultation …
Good. With any luck, the VCAA will subsequently get stuck on the nth phase of Stage 1, and Victoria can be spared their Potemkin Mathematics for another decade or so.
Still, it is strange. The VCAA has indicated nothing of substance about the results of the first phase of consultation. Why not? And, what is the supposed purpose of this second phase? What is the true purpose? According to the VCAA, one of two reasons for Phase Two is
to further investigate [t]he role of aspects of mathematical reasoning and working mathematically in each of the types of mathematics studies.
(The second reason concerns “Foundation Mathematics” which, try as we might, we just cannot pretend any interest.)
As part of this new consultation, VCAA has posted a new paper, and set up a new questionnaire (and PDF here), until 16 September.
And now, Dear Readers, your work begins:
- Please fill in the questionnaire.
- Please (attempt to) read VCAA’s new paper and, if you can make any sense of it whatsoever, please comment to this effect below.
We suspect, however, that this is all a game, disguising the true purpose of Phase Two. It’d be easier to be sure if the VCAA had reported anything of substance about the results of Phase One, but we can still hazard a pretty good guess. As one of our colleagues conjectured,
“There was probably sufficient lack of support [in Phase One] for some radical departure from the norm, and so they will take longer to figure out how to make that happen.”
That is, although the VCAA’s nonsense received significant pushback, the VCAA haven’t remotely given up on it and are simply trying to wait out and wear down the opposition. And, since the VCAA controls the money and the process and the “experts” and the “key stakeholders” and the reporting and everything else except public sentiment, they will probably win.
But they should be made to earn it.