is in the teaching of algebra, not the need for it.
The TFA starts by complaining about how so many students fail the subject, but by the end is describing all sorts of scenarios where maths is a requirements. It would appear that the problem, then, is to find a better way of teaching the subject.
The best results that I have seen come when students can work together to explain stuff to each other, and where the maths is related back to real world problems. A student that has just grasped some concept is better able to explain it than someone for whom that concept is second nature. Some practical use can make the subject seem more real and can aid in the understanding - I never really understood matrices until I started doing some 3D graphics stuff - the classes never related them to anything solid - they were just an abstraction.