UK prime minister seeks to reverse 'anti-math' culture

Sunak wants to require math for all students through age 18.

UK prime minister seeks to reverse 'anti-math' culture

FILE – Britain's Prime Minster Rishi Sunak departs Downing Street on Wednesday, February 22, 2023, to attend Prime Ministers Question in Parliament, London. Rishi Sunak, British Prime Minister, wants to change the 'anti math' mentality and insist that it be taught until adults in England. He acknowledged, however, on Monday, April 17 2023, there were not enough teachers to meet current requirements.

Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP

Rishi Sunak, the U.K. prime minister, wants to reverse a 'anti-math culture' and insist that it be taught until adults are reached in England. However he admitted on Monday that there aren't sufficient teachers to meet current requirements.

Sunak stated that poor math skills among adults held back the economy and that students who lack a solid mathematical foundation would be left behind.

He claimed that Britain's low numeration was due to an "anti-maths mentality".

Sunak explained that they would say, "Oh, maths. I can't handle it, not for me." Everyone laughed. Sunak said, "But we would never joke about not being able read."

The government has cut its math teacher recruitment target by almost 40% since 2020, but still fails to reach the numbers.

Mary Bousted said that parents and teachers will be left puzzled by the latest announcement of the Prime Minister. The government's education policies are simply not logical when viewed as a group.

Geoff Barton is the general secretary of Association of School and College Leaders (a union of principals and heads of schools), a union that represents principals and teachers.

Teachers are planning another walkout for the end of this month due to low wages and a cost-of living crisis, with inflation in double digits that has resulted in high food and fuel costs.

Barton stated that the strike was a diversion from the pressing issue in English education, which is the teacher's pay and conditions being eroded. This has led to a crisis of recruiting and retaining staff.

Sunak acknowledged that he would not achieve his plan in a day.

This summer, an advisory group of experts is expected to discuss the implementation of the expanded math initiative. They will also make recommendations.