Evaluate Factors, Which Are Held To Contribute To Boys’ Underachievement.

2313 words - 9 pages

Evaluate factors, which are held to contribute to boys? underachievement.Underachievement in schools has been very popular to many academics for many years in the field of education and other fields such as psychology and sociology. Until recently the main groups seen to be underachieving are working class pupils, pupils from certain ethnic backgrounds and girls, boys have been thought to be the high achievers. In the seventies girls were seen to perform below boys, they did less well in the old GCE examinations and the amount of girls that went on to further education was significantly less than that of boys. They tended to have a very narrow curriculum and took traditionally girls subject such as home economics and humanities subjects and boys tended to opt for the more technical and academic subjects such as maths and science. However things began to change and parents, schools and girls themselves became increasingly aware of what they could achieve. Governments and schools began to make conscious efforts to remove the imbalance, for example the National Curriculum was introduced to all schools in 1988 and schools set up equal opportunities programmes.Today however it is now the concern of many academics that boys are underachieving in schools. The underachievement begins at an early age, at key stage 1 eighty five per cent of girls achieved levels two or above and over thirty per cent achieved above level three compared to only seventy two per cent of boys achieving levels two or above and only twenty per cent achieving level three. ?Girls were on average a quarter of a level higher than boys?In English, equating to six months progress.? (Oxburgh sited on www.practicalparent.org)). Although boys were slightly ahead in maths and science there was no significant difference. Girls were even further ahead in English by key stage two, by nearly a year as they achieved on average half a level higher than boys. By Key stage three girls were considerably further ahead in English however boys were about two months ahead in maths and about four months ahead in science. However Boys seemed to be performing very well but in fewer numbers, and girls seemed to achieve the average level but in far greater numbers.The gap increases into secondary school, in 2001 fifty five per cent of girls achieved five A* to C grade in the GCSE examinations compared to boys who achieved less with only forty four per cent of them gaining five A* to C grades at GCSE. The inequality was visible across all grades, with Girls scoring on average forty-two points compared to boys who only scored just over thirty six and a half points. Also more boys, than girls fail to gain any GCSE?s at all. It is also apparent that girls now do better than boys in traditionally male dominated subjects.?Girls got more top grade passes in maths and science, and significantly more in English and languages. Only in business, technology, IT and geography and in separate sciences (most pupils take...

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