Sunday, December 04, 2005

Gender Bias in Education

Michael Gurian writes an excellent article on the problem of boys and men in education today. This is no secret to anyone that has taught school in recent years, but to others who only heard about how girls are shortchanged and underchallenged, this may be news.

Basically, boys are doing poorly in school, starting in elementary school and continuing into college. Standardized test scores show it. Report cards show it. The lack of college-educated men in the dating pool shows it. Ask any teacher, and she'll tell you. When award assemblies come around, we teachers would have a hard time trying to make sure that some boys got academic awards.

In a short article, Gurian does a great job of outlining many of the causes of this gender gap: teaching styles, lack of emphasis on education in the home, fatherless boys, and more. I encourage you to read the whole article.

Some may say that it can't be that bad - after all, look at the gender make-up of the Supreme Court, and other institutions of power. I say that that is still the result of the past - those are all older men, educated years ago. But ask any twenty-something college educated woman how hard it is to find someone on her intellectual level to date or marry. For this generation, and future ones, it is a big problem that needs to be addressed.

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