As a news story, the "boy troubles" continue to be a prominent issue in Britain, despite the fact the gaps there are no worse then here. Interesting. Especially prominent in the British coverage are the problems seen among boys from working class white families....


An educator with an interest in boys tells me there's an updated version of Reading Magic, by Mem Fox, available, and it includes a chapter on boys and literacy....


In case you missed Will's Sunday column....


How do teachers unaccustomed to dealing with boys tell the difference?...


Nice analysis here with numbers on the astonishing shortage of black male teachers, compared to the school-age population of black males. I remain wary that dramatically boosting that number will turn the corner on improving the academic performance of black male students -- mostly because I've visited schools where white female teachers were doing a great job teaching inner city males. It's all about how you teach. However, having black male role models undoubtedly helps a lot when when it comes to improving graduation rates....


I'm inclined to agree with E.D. Hirsch (and Mark Bauerlein) in this Chronicle entry. (password protected.) The full argument by Hirsch and Robert Pondiscio is made in an American Prospect piece. It's why President Bush's massive Reading First program never soared -- educators never got beyond the "skill" stage....


School officials in Alexandria seem pleased by results....


Conservatives point fingers at poverty, bad schools and family breakdown for reasons why black males fare so poorly in school. But this writer, like everyone else, misses the key question: why do these factors affect boys far more then girls? The Schott Foundation report focuses on the race angle -- comparing white boys to black boys. That missed much of the point as well. If race (combined with and poverty, bad schools, family breakdown) is the primary driver, then why do twice as many black women as women earn four-year degrees? Obviously, this dilemma is a mix of race, poverty ...


Why do so many young people need college when so many jobs still don't require a college degree? That's an important issue in the gender debate, because if boys don't really need college why worry about the college gender gaps? Ace Washington Post education columnist Jay Mathews airs the debate today. The four qualities employers need most, we're told, are "a work ethic, people skills, presentation skills and social responsibility." In theory you don't need college to possess those skills. But in practice, a college degree is what employers look for as a guarantee workers do in fact possess those ...


Physician and author Leonard Sax advising on these Columbus middle schools: "Most teachers have no awareness of what boy-friendly Spanish education would look like or girl-friendly computer science," Sax said, citing examples of subject areas that showcase the "striking gender gap" in education. Teachers often skew their teaching toward a style more suited for boys when it comes to the sciences and more toward girls when it comes to topics such as foreign language. The results are lingering gender gaps, which make middle school a crucial time, he added. "It's in sixth, seventh and eighth grade when the girls decide ...


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