Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Silly boys!

We've known for a while that girls do better in school than boys. Susan Lewis, the chief inspector of schools in Wales, has brought out her annual report which highlights the issue, an is written up in the BBC report.

But why do the BBC, and Susan Lewis herself, have to treat this news as being some sort of symptom of problems in the education system? When girls do worse academically, as we saw two weeks ago, its reported as being due to "innate differences".

For example Ms Lewis says "Boys particularly are more likely to under achieve, be excluded from school or break the law". Well historically boys have been committing more crimes than girls for a long long time. I'm not going to fall into the trap of suggesting whether that might be an innate or a socially-generated situation. Its been true however even in societies where girls don't go to school and where no children go to school. So why do we need to change our education system to make special allowances for them? Lets ask a different question - why are all these harder-working, smarter girls growing up to lower-paid jobs?


simon said...

Why are all these harder-working, smarter girls growing up to lower-paid jobs?

Where is the evidence that British schoolgirls are 'smarter' than British schoolboys? The girls do better at the exams and coursework currently used, but I don't see this as evidence of intelligence differences between the sexes. 30 years ago anyone suggesting that boys were more 'smarter' than girls because boys were then better at exams would have been accused of sexism. It was assumed schools could adapt to solve the problem, and they did. Are the schools now serving both sexes equally well, or are boys now failed in the way girls once were? Susan Lewis thinks the matter needs looking at, and I agree with her. To simply conclude that girls are 'smarter' than boys and that the current situation is acceptable would be wrong.

Cruella said...

Forget 30 years ago. Right now people are suggesting that men are smarter than women and geting away with it. See my earlier blog entry "In answer to the question...". Girls aren't even getting half of the good jobs at the other end. Seems like when boys are missing out there's an outcry but when girls are its "understandable". That's my point!