Four Harrison County High Schools to Change Teaching Structure of Math

CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — The Harrison County Board of Education has given schools the autonomy to determine how best to meet the Next Generation standards.

“Dr. Manchin feels that because we have such diversity in our high schools, that rather than make a decision for county-wide, we look at the decision high-school wide,” said Harrison County’s Assistant Superintendent Wendy Imperial.

Initially, the curriculum rolled out an integrated math program that would teach tenets of geometry and algebra at the same time. The changes come on the heels of complaints from parents and some students. Four of the five high schools will revert to traditional math structure–teaching the overall subject by dividing the major subjects like geometry and algebra into separate courses.

“They don’t correlate directly across the board from Math I to Next Gen Algebra, but over those three years they are identical in that combination of three years,” Imperial said.

Essentially, the order that the subject is taught in will change, but the end result will remain the same.

“It’s the order of teaching,” she said. “If you look at the standards–the Next Generation Standards–which were based from Common Core, but they are the state standards.

Only Robert C. Byrd High School will maintain an integrated math program.

“Their math teachers and administration chose to stay with that order of teaching,” she said.

Imperial said RCB chose to remain with the integrated standards because they could better serve students that way.

“Math III under the integrated offers kind of a split,” she said. “It offers either Math III which is for students who are Math III STEM, which are students who are going into that science, technical, and math field direction.”

The Math III split is described as one for “liberal arts” by Imperial. She cited the possibilities with Math III as the main motivation for RCB to keep the integrated standards.

The four schools reverting to the old standards (Bridgeport, South Harrison, Liberty, and Lincoln) will roll out the changes for their incoming freshman classes.

Harrison County is one of eleven West Virginia counties to revert to the traditional structure.