I agree with your comment that much written in this discussion is based on conviction rather than solid research.
Let's agree that the results of this experiment with "reform" are not yet in, that it is appropriate for two camps exist--both basing comments on conviction rather than research, and move on to issues that are germaine to the performance of our students on the AP Calculus exams.
I teach in a reform high school program, and I am more than willing to hold my comments until solid evidence is available from students who have completed a full reform high school (and perhaps, middle school as well) and then gone on to university studies. I believe that it is too soon to make the comparisons that I'm seeing here.
Michael Shelly, Ed.D. Mathematics Department Chair Andover High School Bloomfield Hills MI