The Politics of Math Education
1. It is good to problematise mathematics education. Certainly politics is involved in the choice of mathematics curricula.
2. However, is it good to argue and debate so much that nothing gets done? Are you chasing down false dichotomies? Are you assuming that you cannot have it all?
3. In Singapore, we do not argue so much and students go on to perform well in "mathematics". Unfortunely, I feel, they get a very narrow and distorted view of what mathematics really is.
4. What is the answer the dilemma? I think it's a question of identity. I think students should make well-informed negotiated decision about the kinds of people they want to be and how a wholistic mathematics education serves to develop them not just in terms of skills and content, but also in terms of values, habits / dispositions, problem solving ability and critical thinking, ... etc. I would be interested to learn of and even work with curriculum planners heading in this direction.