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 Message Boards » » 08 textbooks contain 109,263 errors Page [1]  
gunzz
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School textbooks, rife with errors, tentatively approved

State gives publishers until spring to fix 109,263 math mistakes

AUSTIN – Proposed math books for elementary school children and their teachers have resulted in one computation that publishers would just as soon erase – 109,263.

That's the number of errors that were uncovered in proposed math textbooks that are under review by the State Board of Education for distribution to schools in the fall of 2008.

The total number of errors was nearly five times the total for last year, thanks to one publisher whose books contained more than 86,000 errors – 79 percent of the total.

Publishers will have until the spring to clean their books up. After that, they can be fined up to $5,000 for every error that makes it into the final editions of books shipped to Texas schools.

"This is an extraordinary number of errors," said Anita Givens, director of instructional materials for the Texas Education Agency, who cited as one reason the shorter amount of time that publishers were given to develop the books.

Ms. Givens said most of the mistakes were found by review panels of educators, with publishers themselves also notifying the state they had found errors after submitting their books for review.

Students may wish some of the errors had not been uncovered – particularly the inclusion in some books of the answers to math quizzes at the end of each chapter. The answers were supposed to appear only in teacher editions of the books.

In other cases, Spanish versions of the books had incorrect translations. And some computations were just wrong.

Six publishers submitted drafts of their textbooks to the TEA hoping to get in line for selection of the next generation of math books that will be used in Texas public schools.

All had some errors, but Houghton Mifflin Co., one of the leading educational publishers in the U.S., had 86,026 errors in the series of books it submitted to the state. That was 79 percent of all the errors that were discovered.

"It looks like one publisher won the sweepstakes," said board member Bob Craig, R-Lubbock, eliciting laughter from other board members. "How can you make 86,000 errors in your textbooks? How do you do that?"


A spokesman for Houghton Mifflin, based in Boston, did not return calls seeking comment on Thursday. A majority of the company's errors were in teacher editions.

Ms. Givens told board members that the publishers have plenty of reason to get rid of the mistakes by the deadline next spring.

"If the errors are not corrected by the time they go to classrooms, then the board can fine them $5,000 for each error," she said, noting that in the past publishers have usually corrected their mistakes on time.

"There is a strong incentive for publishers to be diligent about this."


Despite the errors, state board members tentatively approved most of the books for use in public schools beginning next fall – subject to correction of the errors. Total projected cost for the elementary school math books is $116.8 million.

Texas is one of the largest textbook purchasers in the nation, giving the state enormous influence over the content of books marketed across the county. That distinction is why publishers vigorously compete to have their books approved by the state board, which has authority to review all books and recommend approval to local school districts.
http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/news/texassouthwest/stories/111607dntextextbooks.268c6c7.html

11/20/2007 2:53:16 PM

dagreenone
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suck for the guy that has to count the number of errors.

11/20/2007 2:56:40 PM

BobbyDigital
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haha, and the article has a spelling error to boot.

11/20/2007 3:01:10 PM

pilgrimshoes
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well to be fair

it is texas

11/20/2007 3:04:35 PM

0EPII1
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i would love to correct all ~110,000 errors, for $0.25/error.

11/20/2007 3:18:34 PM

mdozer73
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I wonder how many books were submitted for review.

11/20/2007 5:03:03 PM

bous
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taking shortcuts and using wikipedia for books now i see

11/20/2007 11:51:07 PM

qntmfred
retired
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I know a girl who solves problems for textbooks like that for a living

11/21/2007 12:00:50 AM

LimpyNuts
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Quote :
"i would love to correct all ~110,000 errors, for $0.25/error."

I'd do it for $0.10 / error. I'd still be making around $100 / hour

11/21/2007 12:23:10 AM

skokiaan
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The texas textbook industry is shady as shit. Religious groups have their tentacles all up in the approval process. Outside of the obvious evolution edits, they demand alterations on stuff like pollution, history, and politics.

[Edited on November 21, 2007 at 12:32 AM. Reason : .]

11/21/2007 12:30:55 AM

0EPII1
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Quote :
"I'd still be making around $100 / hour"


so every 3.6 seconds, you will be finding and correcting an error? that's fast. assuming you don't have to find them, then i guess it is reasonable, but not for an extended period of time.

11/21/2007 4:48:48 AM

drunknloaded
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of course a saudi would compain about it no homo

11/21/2007 5:02:52 AM

0EPII1
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I am NOT Saudi. And even if I am, WHAT THE HELL DID YOU MEAN/INSINUATE WITH THAT???

11/21/2007 4:27:58 PM

Nerdchick
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Quote :
"suck for the guy that has to count the number of errors."

11/21/2007 4:30:48 PM

pwrstrkdf250
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haha public school

11/21/2007 4:38:47 PM

soulfire963
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the answers in all engineering textbooks are wrong.

i'm right.

11/21/2007 4:45:07 PM

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