Math is NOT a Waste of Time
Susan Jacoby, a former columnist for the New York Times, raises awareness of scientific and mathematic depravity in the female community in her article “When Bright Girls Decide That Math is ‘a Waste of Time.’” Jacoby believes adolescent girls avoid advanced science and math courses because of stereotypes and “cultural expectations” that society places on women (282). Throughout the article, Jacoby tries to educate parents and women of the lost opportunities girls inflict on themselves so that parents and teachers can decrease the learning gap between boys and girls in the math and science fields. Jacoby believes that parents need to push their daughters to break the barriers and add more science and math classes to their school schedules so that they do not become as “intellectually handicap” as earlier generations.
I agree that girls need to continue their education in the math and science fields and that society acts as an influential factor in what classes females take. However, I think the lack of females in advanced science and math classes has no definitive reason. Researchers constantly develop theories to try to pinpoint the exact reason girls drop advanced math and science classes. Some of these theories state boys do better in math and science because of genetics. Others say that girls have emotional issues that disallow them to achieve in math. Whatever the reason, parents need to start focusing on their daughters’ involvement in advanced science and math classes.
To connect with the audience, Jacoby introduces Susannah, a 16-year-old straight A high school student, and her parents (282). Susannah decides to drop her math and science courses from her high school schedule because she plans to major in art or history. Susannah’s parents do not mind their daughter dropping two of the most important subjects in school (282).
Jacoby blames Susannah’s decision and her parents’ lack of concern on society’s old-fashioned...