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Teachers and education system bias towards girls

(613 Posts)
asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:27:54

What do you all think? I am a teacher (secondary) of 14 years and feel the secondary curriculum (and primary too) is heavily weighted towards girls' natural skills and less so to boys' skills. I have taught all girls for most of the last 14 years in selective (grammar)and high schools (the equivalent of secondary moderns) and i have two sons. We are forever hearing about girls outperforming boys (when in O level days twas the other way around and the 1967 Plowden report sort to redress the balance) I think it has gone way too far in the other direction. sad

Cammelia Mon 20-Oct-08 14:29:54

When you say weighted, can you be more specific?

eg. do you mean literary based?

LadyMuck Mon 20-Oct-08 14:32:43

I would agree with you, but as the world of employment is still geared to males I don't think that the apparent advantage given to grils whilst at school carries on to the workplace.

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:34:34

Yes but not only. I feel that an average girl is far better suited to the curriculum than an average boy due to the nature of the national curriculum, GCSE's and A Levels.Wondering if any mums of boys feel this way too really.

TheFallenMadonna Mon 20-Oct-08 14:34:49

Are teachers biased towards girls? If I had to choose between an all boys or an all girls school I'd certainly go with the boys. I'm a science teacher - I wonder if that makes a difference.

Blandmum Mon 20-Oct-08 14:35:46

as a science teacher I will admit to a soft spot for 'norty' boys! blush

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:36:05

You see I disagree with you Lady Muck that the world of employment is geared to males. IME more and more female breadwinners and males becoming less dominant in workforce. In 10 years time when all these girls are more qualified than their male counterparts what will happen?

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:37:10

I def know of many many teachers who wouldn't/couldn't teach boys (but then i myself have been in an all girl environment for most of my 14 years)

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:38:29

Yes but what is happening to the science curriculum Martian is it becoming more girl centric at the upper levels (I don't know i am a music teacher)?

Blandmum Mon 20-Oct-08 14:39:08

I don't think that I would enjoy working in a single sex school. I like the variety

Blandmum Mon 20-Oct-08 14:39:53

still quite a jump to A level, and we have now (with the OCR course) shifted from course work to practical exams

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:40:51

Each to there own isn't it really. I have taught in both and like both for differing reasons but have just fallen into teaching girls (I went to an all girls selective school myself)

TheFallenMadonna Mon 20-Oct-08 14:41:03

Oh I like a mixed school too. But if I had to choose...

What do you think the "natural skills" of girls and boys are asdmum?

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:44:41

Girls tend to show a longer level (of time) working industriously, suit therefore coursework better (of course this is massive generalisation), and are more expressive with their language and thoughts (through at/dance/drama/music). Boys are more logical (again generalising) and think things through in terms of black and white, less industrious on coursework, better in exam conditions..i know its all generalising but with generalisation there is a grain of truth

asdmumandteacher Mon 20-Oct-08 14:45:29

Gotta go now and pick up my two boys bt will be back later!smile

UmMwahahahaaaaa Mon 20-Oct-08 14:45:33


Sorry, but this really makes me angry for all the girls who just get on with it. Damned if we don't succeed, damned if we do.

What type of teaching do you propose then? Because I would argue there is more 'supposedly male' practical, hand-on teaching now (well, certainly in the comprehensive Inner London schools I went to/have taught in).

Cosette Mon 20-Oct-08 14:45:33

agree with LadyMuck that the workplace is still very very much geared to males. I also think it's very possible that schooling does favour girls slightly more than boys. Girls are achieving good grades, which should make employers keener to employ them, which in turn should make the work environment more equally balanced.

LadyMuck Mon 20-Oct-08 14:46:04

Sorry, but women in business are still hugely underpresented in senior positions. And most of the women who are in senior positions are there either because they have proven themselves much better than any male candidate, or there has been some form of quota. They certainly don't often get the same chance as men. Even when you look at the fact that there are similar numbers of men and women entering fields such as law and accountancy, when you look at the numbers reaching partner, women remain underrepresented. And the pay disparity still exists.

But more than happy to be proven wrong - in which historically male dominant sector of industry, commerce, law or policitics do you think that women now have the same or greater chance of getting the most senior positions?

filz Mon 20-Oct-08 14:46:50

This sounds quite simplistic but I do sometimes think boys get a worse deal because they are naughtier than the girls rather than less academic

LadyMuck Mon 20-Oct-08 14:48:04

Filz, but are they naughtier because they are being taught in ways that suit girls rather than boys wink?

filz Mon 20-Oct-08 14:49:06

I dont know, I just think they appear naughtier on the whole, even socially. Girls seem so much more civilised in comparison

UmMwahahahaaaaa Mon 20-Oct-08 14:50:06

On a calmer note <and relax>. I do think there are some generalisations that seem to be true (and I am another 'norty boy' specialist wink).

What do you think of the diplomas?

Fennel Mon 20-Oct-08 14:50:21

The gender pay gap is still pretty strong among 20 and 30 somethings, pre children, in their first jobs, which suggests that even if there were a bias towards girls in the education system it's more than balanced out in the employment system.

So no I would only agree it's gone too far in the other direction when the gender pay gap for 20-somethings has been reversed.

LadyMuck Mon 20-Oct-08 14:50:50

At what age are you thinking?

filz Mon 20-Oct-08 14:53:57

I was thinking under 13, if you mean me

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