kitchen table math, the sequel: The girl show

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The girl show

The National Honor Society says that 64 percent of its members — outstanding high school students — are girls.

[I]n elementary schools, about 79 percent of girls could read at a level deemed “proficient,” compared with 72 percent of boys. Similar gaps were found in middle school and high school.

The average high school grade point average is 3.09 for girls and 2.86 for boys. Boys are almost twice as likely as girls to repeat a grade.

Boys are twice as likely to get suspended as girls, and three times as likely to be expelled. Estimates of dropouts vary, but it seems that about one-quarter more boys drop out than girls.

Among whites, women earn 57 percent of bachelor’s degrees and 62 percent of master’s degrees. Among blacks, the figures are 66 percent and 72 percent.

In federal writing tests, 32 percent of girls are considered “proficient” or better. For boys, the figure is 16 percent.


There is one important exception: Boys still beat out girls at the very top of the curve, especially in math.

In the high school class of 2009, a total of 297 students scored a perfect triple-800 on the S.A.T., 62 percent of them boys, according to Kathleen Steinberg of the College Board. And of the 10,052 who scored an 800 in the math section, 69 percent were boys.

The Boys Have Fallen Behind
by Nicholas Kristof

The public schools have been completely and totally feminized. Period. There are virtually no guys left inside them and there is virtually no guyness in the air. Suffocating.

I speak as the parent of a high school boy who is happy as a clam attending a BOYS school.

see, e.g.:

Why Boys Fail: Saving Our Sons from an Educational System That's Leaving Them Behind
by Richard Whitmire

The Why Chromosome by Thomas S. Dee (boys need men teachers)

boys need phonics more than girls

Progressive Ed's War on Boys by Janet Daley


concernedCTparent said...

What if you have a girl who doesn't like to learn the "girly" way? My daughter doesn't like to write about her feelings, prefers non-fiction and classical literature to touchy-feely stories about teens, and likes to take the most efficient and direct route to learning math and science. The girl show doesn't work well for her either.

Anonymous said...

The girl show doesn't work for girls with full-blown ADHD, either.

Catherine Johnson said...

Doesn't work for moms with ADHD, either!

Catherine Johnson said...

Not that I know anyone who fits that description.

Barry Garelick said...

It musta worked for Sara Mead, though.

SteveH said...

My son has had some macho male teachers who had real control issues, and I don't see girls in my son's classes who are having an easy time of it. Then again, very few boys ever make it onto the honor roll. I've been told more than once by teachers that this has to do with maturity. It could really be that girls feel more pressure to do what they are supposed to do, even if it's crap. I wouldn't call that maturity, exactly.

LexAequitas said...

The Official Teacher's Dictionary must have a definition of "mature" that reads, "the child who does whatever I want them to do, and mostly keeps quiet the rest of the time, or at least keeps their misbehavior hidden from me." Because as far as I can tell whenever it's been brought up, is that that's what they mean by it.

As far as definitions go, though, it's more fun to get them into a discussion over the word "fair" as applied to students (where it means, "you get what you get and you don't get upset", or somesuch) and themselves (where it means shrieks of, "Merit pay? No way!!")

Laura said...

Girls can benefit from men teachers too! My best/favorite teacher was a man - My 5th grade teacher, not only was a wonderful teacher, but managed to keep the boys in line so that everyone could learn. In other words he was a good role model for all of us.

momof4 said...

My daughter loved having a male PE teacher/soccer coach for 6th-grade NEST (nurture, encourage, support & ?? = torture): he had no interest in that stuff; just told his section to do whatever they wanted-quietly-and not get him into trouble.

le radical galoisien said...

Meh, NHS.

My school's chapter had so much more things that made it more like a social clique than a group of excellence.