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VOICE OF THE DAILY MIRROR: Exam plan could be a major plus.

YOU don't need to be a mathematical genius to know that the way we teach maths in this country doesn't add up.

There have been significant improvements in the way it is dealt with in primary schools, but there are real problems at secondary level.

For many children, the maths curriculum seems as alien as ancient Greek. Attempting to take their GCSE in it is too much of a struggle.

So they give up and leave school without any mathematics qualification.

A new report suggests one way out would be to have a separate exam for young people who are not wizards with numbers. That would not make it a push-over.

It should be relevant to the maths we need in everyday life - and we do need it, as much as being able to read and write. We live in an age when we are bombarded by figures.

At home, at work, out shopping, dealing with the bank, credit cards, travel agents, insurance firms and pension companies.

If we don't understand what they are saying, we will be baffled at best, cheated at worst.

Education Secretary Charles Clarke, a maths graduate, wants a radical solution to the mathematics crisis. This report could be part of it.
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Title Annotation:Leader
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Feb 25, 2004
Words:206
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