Kevin Dykema

  • Kevin DykemaKevin Dykema
    Candidate for President-Elect

    Position:  Mattawan (Michigan) Middle School Grade 8 Mathematics Teacher (1999–present)

    Education:  BA (mathematics), Calvin University, Michigan; MA (mathematics education), Western Michigan University (WMU)

    Previous Experience:  WMU Instructor (1999–2006); Grade 8 Mathematics Teacher, Kalamazoo (Michigan) Public Schools (1995–1999)

    Memberships:  National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM); National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics; TODOS: Mathematics for All; Benjamin Banneker Association; Women and Mathematics Education; Association of Mathematics Teachers Educators; Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics (MCTM); ASCD

    NCTM Activities:  Back-to-School Task Force Chair (2020); St. Louis Annual Meeting Program Committee; Board of Directors (2016–2019); Budget and Finance Committee (2016–2018), Chair (2018–2019); Executive Committee (2017–2019); Publications Committee (2016–2019)

    Other Activities:  MCTM Conference on Math for Students with Disabilities Co-Chair (2015–present); MCTM Virtual Book Club Founder and Coordinator (2010–2019); MCTM Annual Conference Chair (2010–2016); MCTM Board (2009–2012)

    Publications:  Coauthor: Productive Math Struggle (Corwin 2020)

    Honors:  WMU Alumni Achievement Award (2019); MCTM Service Award (2013); MCTM Regional Director Award (2007)

    Statement:  Although many things in mathematics education might be debated, one thing cannot: the need to continuously focus on providing a high-quality mathematics education for every student. For far too long, mathematics education has perpetuated often substantial differences in opportunities and quality for different groups of students, including those of color, with disabilities, and in poverty. NCTM must continue to address these disparities and help lead change.

    NCTM’s Catalyzing Change series raises the issue of inequity, challenging us to think deeply and converse with a variety of stakeholders about raising the quality of mathematics education for all students. Much of this work focuses on the systems level—an entire school, district, or state. Although this is vitally important, NCTM must also focus on the classroom level. Mathematics teachers must be part of both the decision-making related to access and equity and the consideration of classroom practices that truly support such opportunities. In many cases, teachers will need ongoing professional development and support as they implement such classroom practices.

    Classroom teachers need to be thinking deeply about the effects of their practice on each and every student.  NCTM can and must provide guidance and leadership in this area. Bartell, Wager, and colleagues do a wonderful job of laying out nine equitable mathematics teaching practices in their January 2017 Journal for Research in Mathematics Education research commentary. Their work could be expanded and illustrated with classroom examples to provide NCTM’s next major publication to push the mathematics education field forward. A series of virtual and in-person professional development sessions and President’s Messages coupled with webinars could be offered to further expand the impact.

    Mathematics educators must see the value of NCTM membership. Social media cannot offer the same advocacy on Capitol Hill and at the state level on behalf of its members and the students they teach.  NCTM must increase its tweets about advocacy, utilize myNCTM to raise awareness of the benefits to teachers that NCTM’s support has secured, and better share and explain what we are advocating for.

    Creating grade-level groups within myNCTM could increase member value and a sense of community as teachers from across the world share ideas with their peers. PK–12 classroom teachers who are current and past committee or Board members could be encouraged to participate to help increase the visibility of teachers’ roles as NCTM leaders.

    Finally, let’s build on the success of recent virtual offerings and make a virtual conference a regular part of our professional learning events, eliminating travel costs and time away from classrooms.