We Say

With a long history of promoting the very best in learning and teaching Mathematics, The Mathematical Association actively engages in consultation and discussion on the issues currently affecting Mathematics education.

We respond professionally and constructively to ministerial announcements and to proposals from the Department for Education, and from bodies concerned with curricula, assessment and training. We comment on inquiry reports, academic research findings and reports published by organizations and learned bodies supporting Mathematics in Britain. Occasionally, we adopt position papers prompted by discussions amongst ordinary members, and at our committees.

We hope that we have something distinctive to say on Mathematics curriculum and pedagogy, formative and summative assessment, inspection, the dissemination of quality assurance information, and the training, expertise, professional development, recruitment and retention of Mathematics teachers.

Here are some of the things WE SAY …

April 2024

Mathematics Provision in UK Universities

Our Teaching Committee have produced this article to express their concerns regarding the dwindling number of mathematical degree courses at universities in the UK, and how this is having an impact on the future of the teaching of mathematics.

November 2023

Responses on the Mathematical Futures from the Joint Primary Group and 11-18 Sub-Committee 

Both sub-committees of the MA's Teaching committee have put forward their thoughts on the Mathematical Futures discussion paper.

Questions answered:

1. Do we support the vision for the future of mathematics and data education?
2. Is the vision appropriate for all students?
3. Are there areas of the Mathematical Futures vision that need further development?
4. What are the first steps needed to begin the process of change?


October 2023

ATM/MA Assessment in KS1

The end of statutory assessment in KS1 offers schools the opportunity to review how their assessment practices support children’s learning, and how colleagues are best supported, moving forward. The following questions and sample tasks are designed to stimulate discussions within schools and illustrate how teachers can make the most effective use of assessment to determine:
? how secure children are in Y1 content
? whether they have a flexible and deep understanding of content from Y2
? their preparedness for content in Y3.


September 2023

ATM/MA response to the Ofsted Report Coordinating Mathematical Success: the mathematics subject report

In order to support Primary teachers and leaders with how to respond to the recently published Coordinating Mathematical Success: the mathematics subject report (July 2023), the ATM/MA Joint Primary Group have produced the following short document.


January 2023

Mathematics to 18

Our response to request for comment from the Times Educations Supplement. re the recent announcement from the Prime Minister to introduce maths education to the age of 18.

December 2022

Position paper - onscreen assessment in GCSE mathematics

October 2022

ATM/MA response to the Ofsted Aide Memoire, Guidance and Training Materials for a Deep Dive in Mathematics by Ofsted Inspectors

September 2022

Letter to Kit Malthouse 

New  Secretary of State for Education

ICAPE response from Primary Joint Group MA/ATM

July 2022

Statement of support for Core Maths qualifications

Read our statement here

MMSA Update June 2022

These documents have existed before but have been revised by the group working on bringing the associations together. I would encourage all members to read them, in particular the Draft Proposal for the putative new association and the Frequently Asked Questions. The former sets out a potential structure for the new association whilst the latter should help to clarify many questions and doubts that colleagues might have about the move to come together.

Proposal for a new Association

Association for Mathematics in Education

Association for Mathematics in Education FAQs 

January 2022

Ofqual consultation on designing and developing accessible assessments.

This is what we said

Background documentation can be found here

The Mathematical Association response to the joint Ofqual/Department for Education consultation:

‘Contingency arrangements: GCSE, AS, A level, Project and AEA’ 12th October 2021

Ofqual and DfE consultation about contingency arrangements in the event that examinations have to be cancelled next Summer.

On 30th September, much anticipated information about the examinations in England was released by the Department for Education and Ofsted. We welcome your views on this.

Read our summary and contact our Teaching Committee

New Secretary of State for Education

We offer our congratulations to the Rt. Hon Nadhim Zahawi, MP, for the appointment of Secretary of State for Education. 

Read our letter to the Secretary of State

Read the reply received in October 2021

Ofqual and DfE consultation on proposed changes to assessment of GCSEs, AS and A levels in 2022 (18th July 2021)

Read the MA response to the consultation: click here

MA/ATM Primary Group

Read the Response to OFSTED Research Review

Mathematics is a ‘creative and highly interconnected discipline’ (DfE, 2013, p.3) which is often misinterpreted as having a narrow, arithmetic focus. Both
associations uphold the current National Curriculum (NC) aims of fluency (conceptual understanding), reasoning (following a line of enquiry, conjecturing
relationships and generalisations, developing an argument, justification of proof using mathematical language) and problem solving (non-routine
problems). One of the purposes of this document is to remind practitioners of the importance of these aims in interpreting the Ofsted Research Review.
After all, these aims support a ‘high-quality mathematics education [which] provides a foundation for understanding the world, the ability to reason
mathematically, an appreciation of the beauty and power of mathematics, and a sense of enjoyment and curiosity about the subject’ (DfE, 2013, p.3).

The Teaching and Learning of Multiplication Bonds: A Position Statement

Pupils need to develop an understanding of the multiplicative composition of numbers, fluency in working flexibly with multiplication bonds and automaticity in knowing them.
This Position Statement arises from meetings of the Joint ATM/MA Primary Group which have frequently turned to discussing issues around the teaching of multiplication. In the light of these discussions, we hope this statement will help to inform the debate around how best to teach and learn multiplication bonds.

Read here

Consultation on an additional GCSE, AS and A level exam series in autumn 2020?

Proposals for an additional exam series in autumn 2020 in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

This consultation ran from 1pm on 22 May 2020 to 11:45pm on 8 June 2020

Read the full report here

Consultation on proposed changes to the assessment of GCSEs, AS and A levels in 2021

This consultation ran from 2 July 2020 to 11:45pm on 16 July 2020

Read the full report here

Consultation on grading specified general qualifications in 2020: GCSEs, AS, A levels, Extended Project Qualifications and Advanced Extension Award.

This consultation ran from 4:45pm on 15 April 2020 to 11:45pm on 29 April 2020

Read the full report here

April 2020 OFSTED Consultation on Initial Teacher Education.

OFSTED has proposed changes to the initial teacher education inspection framework and handbook for September 2020, and consulted on them.  Teaching Committee discussed this over the internet and responded.  We agreed strongly with all of OFSTED's proposals, and made substantial comments, some of them specific to mathematics.

Read our full response here, including OFSTED's proposals.

February 2020 OFSTED Consultation on Removing the Exemption from Inspection for Schools and College rated Outstanding

OFSTED propose to remove the exemption, which can leave some schools uninspected for up to ten years, and they conducted a consultation about it.  We discussed this at Teaching Committee, and agreed with the proposal.  We always look for implications specific to mathematical education, but this time we didn't find any.

Read our full response here

October 2019 Report on the meeting between The Mathematical Association (MA) and the Department for Education (DfE)

The following was discussed at the meeting on 23rd October 2019:

  • Issues surrounding A level Mathematics.
  • Year 4 Multiplication Tables Check (MTC).
  • Recruitment and retention of mathematics teachers, and workload and wellbeing.
  • DfE’s planned Post-16 Mathematics Teacher Focus Group and MA’s Post-16 subcommittee of Teaching Committee.
  • Promoting Maths Week England

Read the full report here

Read an associated TES article here.

September 2019 Secretary of State For Education Gavin Williamson's response to the MA's letter

When Gavin Williamson MP was appointed Secretary of State for Education, we wrote to him to introduce ourselves as the sort of people he might want to consult.  Here is our letter.  He wrote back and invited us to arrange a meeting to brief one of his officials.  We are now setting that up, so this will be our first opportunity to speak truth to this particular power.

April 2019 Education inspection framework 2019: inspecting the substance of education

Consultation document seeking views on OFSTED proposals for changes to the education inspection framework from September 2019.

Read the MA response here.