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Bogusia of Nucleaus Learning offers an instructive explanation of why schools teach advanced math.
Teaching advance math is like teaching a baby to walk. Of course, it is not absolutely necessary, and we could get around with only arithmetic (and many people do this). As teachers, however, we should realize that the world is designed for people who know advanced math, and instead of crawling, with the skills of math our students can get up on two feet and run.