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Houston Area Elementary Schools Using Visual Math Software Increase Math Achievement

Houston, TX, Oct 6, 2011 The non-profit education researcher MIND Research Institute announced that Houston-area schools using MIND’s unique, visual math instructional software achieved substantial increases in math proficiency in 2010/11. More than 800 students and teachers increased the percent of students who “Met Standards” by 4.2 points, and who achieved “Commended” scores by 11.4 points over 2010 TAKS (Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills) math scores. In both cases this was double or more the growth at comparable schools not using the math software.

All eight Houston-area schools that fully implemented the ST Math® program were launched by MIND Research’s Math Initiative program. The program provides software site licenses to eligible, low-performing schools in major urban areas. The goals of the Math Initiative are to elevate student math achievement, demonstrating what a combination of a powerful new tool for teachers, along with dedicated implementation, can accomplish. MIND Research Institute partners with local and national foundations and corporations to fund the grants for these targeted schools.

The eight schools are in the Houston and Spring Branch Districts, and implemented the program at grades 3, 4, and/or 5. This is the second year in a row the Houston-area Math Initiative schools have doubled math achievement growth vs. comparison schools. “We are very proud of our students, who achieved an 18-point gain in math on the Stanford10 norm-referenced test and a 26-points improvement on commended performance on their TAKS scores,” said Mr. Juan Gonzalez, principal at Briscoe Elementary School in Houston ISD. “Our staff is dedicated to ensuring that students not just understand the math content that we teach but master all the objectives. MIND Research Institute’s ST Math visual math program complemented our school’s math curriculum and the students really enjoyed it.”

“These Houston-area schools demonstrated important achievement gains in math, through the hard work and dedication of both teachers and students in meeting MIND’s implementation standards,” said Andrew R. Coulson, Education Division President, MIND Research Institute. “We are also grateful for all of our Texas philanthropic partners, who are helping these pioneering educators prove a powerful new tool for Texas math education.”

Texas contributors include the Houston Endowment, which supported MIND Research Institute’s Houston Area Math Initiative initial launch in 2010, and national contributors include PricewaterhouseCoopers, Cisco Foundation, Wells Fargo Foundation, and the University of Phoenix Foundation. Through philanthropy, nationwide over 147,000 students, 6,000 teachers and 443 schools in six states have received licenses for MIND’s uniquely visual supplemental math software.

Math Initiative schools receive MIND’s site licenses for the award-winning ST Math software, teacher training, and support for teachers and principals throughout the school year. The animated, interactive, self-paced and game-based visual software is used by students as a supplement to their conventional, language intensive math instructional materials, and helps ensure that students make sense of challenging math concepts by literally seeing how the math works.

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