Republic of Mathematics blog

Jim Simons on fixing American math education

Posted by: Gary Ernest Davis on: August 5, 2011

2 Responses to "Jim Simons on fixing American math education"

Interesting. Basically his argument boils down to “Want to keep good people in teaching, and recruit excellent people to the field? You need to increase their salary” but the observation he makes that people who are good at math have so many other options is important too. This is why he presumably doesn’t think that we need to pay people with English degrees more to work in teaching, since they have less choice. Oh wait. English majors have LOTS of choices outside of teaching, and frequently choose other careers…perhaps we should be paying all sorts of teachers more than we do?

No, English majors absolutely don’t have as many other high-paying options. People who know math can be engineers, scientists, or traders making millions at Simons’ hedge fund and others like it. People who were English majors have no options that are even remotely similar. In fact, there is no job for which an undergraduate English major qualifies you, except maybe copy editor at a newspaper, if any are being hired any more.

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