Founded in 1978, Women and Mathematics Education (WME) is a 501(C)(3) national partner affiliate of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM), the Conference Board of the Mathematical Sciences (CBMS), and the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE). Each of these global leaders and foremost authorities in mathematics education strives to ensure that each and every student has access to the highest quality mathematics teaching and learning. WME’s members hail from each of the 50 states, Canada and Africa and represent Pre K-20 mathematics teachers and college/university mathematics educators (including pre-service mathematics teachers).
That all children – particularly girls, women and underrepresented minority students - have access to the highest quality mathematics education that empowers them to gain the self-confidence, enthusiasm, and endurance needed to succeed in mathematics and to transform themselves and their communities. We envision a world where everyone is enthused about mathematics, sees the value and beauty of mathematics, and is empowered by the opportunities mathematics affords.
To advocate for equity and high – quality teaching and learning of mathematics for all students, especially related to girls, women and underrepresented minority students.
To advance educators’ knowledge and ability that lead to implementing an equitable, rigorous and coherent mathematics program that incorporates the role gender, language and culture play in teaching and learning mathematics;
To develop and support educational leaders who continue to carry out the mission of WME;
To generate and disseminate knowledge about equitable and high quality mathematics for girls, women and URMS;
To inform the public and influence educational policies in ways that particularly enable girls, women and URMS to become mathematically proficient in order to enhance college, career and citizenry readiness; and
To inform families about educational policies and learning strategies that will enable their children to become mathematically proficient.
The First 20 Years: 1978 – 1998 Originally named Association for the Promotion of the Mathematics Education of Girls and Women (APMEGW), the Women and Mathematics Education (WME) grew out of a series of papers at the 56th NCTM Annual Conference in April, 1978 in Washington, DC. The original steering committee of APMEGW were Judith Jacobs, chair; Joanne Rossi Becker, treasurer; Relinda Walker, secretary; Dora Helen Skypek, member-at-large; Alice Schwant, newsletter editor; and Ruth Afflack, Constitution and Bylaws, Chair. Advisory board members were: Lenore Blum, Elizabeth Fennema, Alice Schafer, Joel Schneider, Lucy Sells, and Sheila Tobias. That year, the papers were organized and later published in the volume “Perspectives on Women and Mathematics”, organized and edited by Judith Jacobs. During the earlier years of WME, the organization’s focus was on reversing girls’ and women’s avoidance of mathematics. One way this focus was accomplished was to have the WME members present at selected mathematics conferences with the summaries of their research projects presented in the newsletter. Descriptions of gender differences in classroom teacher-student interactions including associated mathematics resources which were prominent features in the first WME newsletters.