SF Guardians: We recalled the school board

Bring Algebra Back for SF's 8th graders

Wait what? 8th graders don't have Algebra 1?

Nope. In 2014, SF decided to stop offering Algebra 1 in 8th grade and delay it until 9th grade for all students.

They hoped it would be more equitable... but the results were exactly the opposite.

A study by Stanford professors found that enrollment in AP Calculus (crucial for a STEM career) dropped sharply... especially amongst disadvantaged kids … as those with means found workarounds.

AP Calculus enrollment is up for white students... down for everyone else.
This is not surprising, as delaying Algebra 1 to 9th grade forces students to compress 5 years of advanced math into four...

...making for a difficult junior year, and gaps in their precalculus education:
SF public school students have to compress 5 years of advanced math into 4 years.
Removing access to 8th grade Algebra 1 was an experiment... and it failed.

It's time to bring algebra back.

Meanwhile, in the rest of the bay area...

Most students have access to Algebra 1 in 8th grade... some in 7th... putting SF public school kids at a disadvantage compared to their bay area peers.

There are two outliers:

1/ small districts who don't have enough students to offer accelerated math, and

2/Oakland... which last year decided to follow San Francisco's lead.

Teachers in Oakland are now raising funds so their students can take Algebra 1 in summer school instead of falling behind.

They shouldn't have to do this.
Map showing kids have access to algebra in 7th grade in Silicon Valley, 8th grade in the east bay and peninsula, but not until 9th grade in SF and Oakland.
Districts with Algebra 1* in
dark green - 7th grade
light green - 8th grade
yellow - 8th grade but online only this year
red - 9th grade
grade 7
light green
grade 8
grade 8 (online only this year)
grade 9
* or Math I, for integrated math.
(Data not available for districts shown in gray.)
Click any school district for the cite -- if it's missing, we probably called them. Got an update? founders@sfguardians.org .

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