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Teen Health 411
Teen Health 411

A Boy Crisis?

My daughter cut an interesting article out of the PARADE magazine for me a few weeks ago entitled, "Does America Have a Boy Crisis?" which really surprised both of us, and has made for several very interesting discussions about school and gender.

The article had caught her eye because it had a little quiz:
  • At your school, do most boys do as well academically as girls?
  • Are boys more disorganized than girls?
  • If there really is a boy crisis, what is the best solution?
    • Boys-only schools?
    • More male teachers?
    • Different schedules?
    • Tutors?
    • Other
Now, she was not pretending to be an expert as she attends a girls-only school and her closest male friend just scored 99th percentile across every category of the PSAT, but hey, this looked interesting.

The article suggested that girls outperform boys on high school report cards, get higher GPAs in college, and actually attend college more often than males. The article suggested that these outcomes are due, in part, to the fact that boys (in general) seem more unorganized than girls, are uninterested in homework, do not turn things in on time, do poorly on standardized tests and find it difficult to get their college applications completed.

It would suggest to me that our education system may have a "female" bias toward verbal skills and if you think about it, sitting still, listening, and writing are very "female," characteristics and probably not the best situation for males who prefer activity and spontaneity. I look forward to comments.

Photo credit: thetorpedodog
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About the Author

Dr. Brown is a developmental psychologist specializing in adolescent health.

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