Date: April 6, 2011
Contact: Carol Connelly, Director,
Media & Communication Services, ext. 5267, firstname.lastname@example.org
PNC, MCAS Mathematics and Science Partnership Grant
Westville – Purdue University North Central in partnership with the Michigan City Area Schools have received an Indiana Mathematics and Science Partnership grant from the Indiana Department of Education and the Mathematics and Science Partnership Team.
The grant, “Conceptual Algebra Readiness for Everyone (CARE)” will help students better understand the conceptual foundation for algebra. CARE was developed in response to the new requirement that all Indiana students must pass the End of Course Assessment in Algebra in order to graduate from high school.
“This is a tremendous opportunity,” said PNC Chancellor Dr. James B. Dworkin. “PNC and the Michigan City Area Schools enjoy a long-standing partnership and we willing work together to enhance the education opportunities for the young people of Michigan City. This grant will benefit our students and their teachers. Students need good fundamental math skills if they are to be successful in school and in the workplace. This grant will play a major role in improving the mathematical understanding of students.”
Dr. David Feikes, professor of Mathematics, the lead contact for Purdue, explained, “Our intent is to help students understand the big ideas that are the foundation of algebra. Too often students are manipulating symbols, x's and y's, without understanding what they mean or why they are doing the manipulations. In the CARE project, PNC professors in collaboration with teachers, will develop weekly activities that will help students in 4 th through 7 th grades develop this conceptual foundation. The first year, we will work in 4th and 5th grades; the second year, 6th grade and in the third year, 7th grade.”
Dr. Jan Radford, curriculum director for the Michigan City Area Schools added, “We are pleased to receive the (CARE) grant in partnership with PNC. As a state, we are transitioning to the Common Core Standards and we believe this partnership will put us ahead of the learning curve. All of our teachers, as well as the private school teachers in Michigan City, will have the opportunity to participate in two weeks of training during summer 2011 and 2012, and have professional support during the academic year that will help clarify strategies and deepen understanding of Common Core math standards in general and algebra readiness in particular. We want all MCAS students to have access to teachers with a strong mathematical background.”
Also assisting with the grant is Dr. Keith Schwingendorf, PNC dean of the College of Science. Dr. David Pratt, associate professor of Education and director of Learning and Technology, will serve as project evaluator.
Feikes has worked with the MC schools for 18 years. He has a long partnership with many of the teachers in elementary schools and is looking forward to developing similar relationships with the middle school teachers who will be participating in this project.