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Friday, May 14, 2010
Gove recalls maths textbooks
The books, in relating the concepts of fractions and percentages, describe 1/2 as 50% instead of the more modern version of 55%.
Chapters on decimal points will be removed entirely, as, according to senior Tory sources, "that sort of thing isn't really considered important any more".
Schools minister Nick Gibb said the mistake was further evidence of "dumbing down" under Labour. "Just because it's easier to multiple and divide by 50 than 55 doesn't make it right," said the newly-appointed junior minister. "I don't see why we can't go back to pounds and ounces anyway."
But mathematics experts said the recall was unnecessary. Professor Cognac of Queen Victoria University said 50% was a perfectly reasonable figure for 1/2, and described the new figure as "fuzzy math".
Asked to comment on the professor's views, Gove responded "I'm paid to entertain [nonsense], and that's what I'm doing."
Liberal Democrats agreed with the move. A Liberal Democrat spokesperson issued a statement, but none of our reporters saw much point in reading or commenting on it.
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