> Most students are simply not interested in math and more are not > interested in physics. We cannot beat that fact of life by remodeling > these courses for uninterested students, and the period in which we > tried this will go down in history as a huge blunder.
It was more than a blunder, for it had several aspects (and still does). For some it was ignorance, to accept the new dicta as good education and good polity, e.g., to avoid arithmetic on the grounds that calculators had rendered arithmetic obsolete -- and it permitted more children to succeed, they had been told, while for others who accepted it at first it was a mistake not to object once the chorus of objection should have been answered by a second thought, which NCTM rejected in its *Principles and Standards* of 2000; but at the highest level it was plain dishonesty, with an egalitarian ideal presented as justification. The publishers of schoolroom materials made good use of the "blunder", especially when some of the private foundations got talked into the new dispensation, though NSF-EHR, being a leader, needed no persuasion.