My last post proposed that we add incentives for high school students to take college math (Math 1050) in high school. Now, let me throw you a curveball by suggesting that Utah stop providing money for teaching Math 1010 concurrent enrollment in high school.
Here’s the reason. Math 1010 isn’t college math. It is college remedial math. The point of Math 1010 is to remediate math deficiencies before a student can take a math class that actually counts toward a major (e.g., Math 1030, 1040, or 1050). Yes, a student can get college credit for Math 1010 (unlike the 900-level remedial courses which carry no credit), but that credit is an elective and does not satisfy the math requirement for any degree.*
So, why spend extra money to teach remedial math in high school? The answer is that high schools, students, teachers, etc. are excited to teach “college math” in high school. But, again, it is remedial math. Math 3 (the normal high school math class) works fine. Math 1010 is not better.
I propose we stop spending money to teach Math 1010 concurrent enrollment. We’re not a rich state. We need to focus our resources. Any money currently being spent on Math 1010 concurrent enrollment would be better spent elsewhere–like on incentives for high school students to take Math 1050, which actually does count toward degrees.
*Math 1010 does count toward the math requirements for an Associates of Applied Sciences (AAS). It would be a WONDERFUL thing if more high school students worked on applied technology education degrees their junior/senior years of high school (even to the extend, I would argue, that they focus on a combination of certificate/GED). They could graduate high school (or get their GED) with a certificated skill that would bring down a nice salary, AND they could articulate that certificate experience for a year’s college credit toward an AAS degree–meaning that they are actually ahead of other high school students who took the normal route. To encourage such a pathway–and to focus Math 1010 concurrent enrollment where it actually make sense–it would make sense to preserve Math 1010 concurrent enrollment as a part of a program where a high school student is pursuing a certificate through an Applied Technology College, but ONLY as a part of such programs. To my knowledge, such a program currently only exists at Davis Applied Technology.