Despite an increasing number of reports about boys’ problems in school, a new study says boys are actually making substantial academic gains—it’s just that girls are making strides faster.
The report, produced by the Washington-based think tank Education Sector, uses data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, commonly known as “the nation’s report card.”
The data suggest that boys have made progress or stayed about the same in most subjects, but that girls have made improvements faster on some measures, such as in mathematics, science, and geography. As a consequence, girls have narrowed some academic achievement gaps, creating the appearance that boys are losing ground, the report says.
The study suggests that the recent attention given to the gender gap in education would be better focused on the needs of low-income and minority students.
A version of this article appeared in the July 12, 2006 edition of Education Week