By the time we reach Grade 8 in our 14th year, we should expect to have gained a certain acumen in basic Arithmetic and perhaps even the Maths. In either case, Number should not be a problem.
To walk in to a programming course with anything less is just not feasible. Stop. Go back and study some math. We get way too bogged down in so many exercises over math misunderstandings that completely cloud the actual lesson. This is unacceptable.
If a student believes they can be derelict in one discipline and will not be in another, they are misguided. Dereliction is dereliction, and once ingrained it cuts accross all paths. One can see what teachers are faced with when parents have no expectations of their children, nor they (the children) of themselves.
Come the community to the rescue. Let's make this a topic where we can mete out the problem arithmetic and mathematics that plague the courses, so we can get on with coding in the lessons and not be bogged down by otherwise disruptive concepts.
Bring the Math here!