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Hundreds of maths teachers from across South Africa will descend on Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University for the annual Association for Mathematics Education of South Africa (AMESA) national congress next week.

From Monday, 3 July to 7 July, the 23rd annual conference – under the theme “Restoring the dignity of Mathematics learners through quality teaching and learning” – will be hosted at the University’s South campus.

Dr Vasuthavan Govender, the president of AMESA, said that this year’s theme follows closely to the previous year’s conferences.

“In 2015 we focused on ‘deepening the quality of mathematics teaching and learning’ and in 2016 we were  ‘reclaiming our African pride through mathematics teaching’ and now we focus on “restoring the dignity of Mathematics learners through quality teaching and learning”.

The conference, which was last held in Port Elizabeth in 2008, aims to formulate policy statements on matters regarding mathematics, to educate and promote such perspective among its members, policy-making bodies and organs in civil society involved in education, Dr Govender said.

AMESA is also actively engaged in mathematics education projects that will result in the social, economic, political and cultural development of society.

The quality of education in South Africa, and particularly in maths and science, has been under severe scrutiny, with the 2016 World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Global Information Technology Report placing it last in maths and science education quality and 137th, out of 139, for the overall education system.

The Eastern Cape has, over the years, repeatedly come in last place out of all the other provinces with regards to pass rates and results, with this attributed to many factors. One of which is that learners are inadequately prepared for their examinations.

AMESA serves as an instrumental tool that ensures that teachers, especially in mathematics, are fully equipped to implement fruitful lessons for the learners.

“AMESA caters for a wide and diverse group of members who are all united in their love of Mathematics. We are convinced that the 2017 edition of Congress will have more than enough interesting and informative academic sessions to cater for all the participants,” De Govender said.

“AMESA is showing our nation that we are serious about “restoring the dignity of mathematics learners” and it is expected of all of us to take this powerful message of Congress 2017 back to our classrooms.”

Congress director Dr Tulsi Morar, who works within NMMU’s Faculty of Education, said that this conference is for every mathematics educator and the lessons learnt will be implemented in class so that mathematics teaching and learning can improve.

“The week promises to be an interesting one. We have a full agenda lined up for the week with five plenary sessions, 48 long and short paper presentations, 31 workshops and 10 ‘How I Teach’ sessions,” he said.

Contact information
Dr Tulsi Morar
Operations Manager: Faculty of Education
Tel: 27 41 504 4596