The war against boys in schoolWritten by Reid Ahlbeck | | firstname.lastname@example.org
In ”The Myth That Schools Shortchange Girls: Social Science in the Service of Deception,” Professor Judith S. Kleinfeld traces the widespread misconceptions about gender differences in education to two key sources — the highly publicized report, ”How Schools Shortchange Girls,” published by the American Association of University Women in 1992, and the work of Harvard gender studies professor Carol Gilligan.
Kleinfeld writes, ”The charge that schools shortchange girls is false political propaganda. In their zeal to advance the interests of women, the [AAUW] and other advocacy groups have distorted the achievements of women and the experience of girls and boys in schools.”
If anything, girls receive preferential treatment and it is boys who are shortchanged by schools. Kleinfeld says, ”Late-maturing boys can be [wrongly] stigmatized as poor learners and assigned to low-ability groups in the primary grades, especially in reading. … [Perfectly healthy and normal] bright, bored, and rambunctious boys [are often wrongly and tragically] diagnosed with attention deficit disorder and placed on drugs like Ritalin.”
Kleinfeld continues, ”[The ‘shortchanged girl’ myth] draws attention and resources away from the group the schools truly fail, African-American males… [who] score lowest on virtually every educational measure. This is the group where an enormous gap does exist between males and females.”
In ”The War Against Boys: How Misguided Feminism Is Harming Our Young Men” American Enterprise Institute scholar Christina Hoff Sommers writes, ”In 1990, Carol Gilligan announced to the world that America’s adolescent girls were in crisis. … Gilligan, more than anyone else, is cited as the academic and scientific authority conferring respectability on the claims that American girls are being psychologically depleted, socially ‘silenced,’ and academically ‘shortchanged.’ ”
Read the rest of the first chapter of Sommers’s book free at Amazon.com to find out why the work of Gilligan and other gender feminists is based on fundamentally flawed analysis and ”missing” data.
Here are the facts about academic gender differences outlined by Judith Kleinfeld:
1. Most sex differences on standardized tests are negligible.
2. Females have an advantage in reading and writing, while males have an advantage in mathematics, science, and geopolitics.
3. Males cluster at both the bottom and the top of the academic bell curve, i.e. there are more males in remedial classes and more male academic ”superstars,” especially in math and science.
4. Sex differences in intellectual achievement are rooted in both biological and cultural influences.
Girls and women are more than holding their own academically and professionally. Women currently outnumber men on college campuses and generally outperform men academically — though a disproportionate number of women sadly opt for intellectually weak programs (art, English, etc.) and low paying professions (teaching, social work, etc.), or utterly waste their talents and opportunities in politicized mickey-mouse pseudo-disciplines like Women’s Studies.
Kleinfeld says because of our accurate understanding of gender differences, ”Improvements in mathematics and science education for females have taken place. …These efforts have borne fruit.” However, because of continued bias against boys ”comparable programs have not targeted the areas where boys are behind.”
The widespread proliferation, uncritical acceptance and college level teaching of blatantly bogus, biased and politicized theory and academic ”research” (particularly in the areas of education, psychology, gender studies, Africana studies, law, literary theory, history, philosophy, etc.) has fueled the wrongheaded liberal social agenda and resulted in an effective total loss of credibility in the social sciences and humanities.
Meanwhile, countless young minds continue to be tragically warped and wasted in the massive, misguided, dumbed-down, politicized and failed liberal social engineering experiment we call American education.