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unbalanced girl:boy ratio in primary classes? Is it a problem?

(26 Posts)
N01 Tue 28-Jun-11 14:18:00

Class list not finalised so I may be worrying needlessly, but ds is going into reception in Sept (one form entry) and everyone I have met so far who has a child going there is the parent of a girl. Obviously it won't all be girls, but at what point does a class become unbalanced to the detriment of those in the minority? 14:16 doesn't sound bad, but 12:18 does!

ds has just started finding the company of a group of girls less than fun. One on one he's fine but we went to a friend's house the other day and 3 girls to 1 boy wasn't much fun for him. All my local friends with dcs the same age have girls and I was hoping school would open up a few more friendships for him. His only best friend is moving away too sad.

JemimaMop Tue 28-Jun-11 14:22:33

DS1 is in a year group where there are 10 girls and 4 boys. DS2 is in a year group where there are 11 girls and 4 boys. They are in composite classes, so this year the two year groups will be together meaning that there are 21 girls and 8 boys, with two sets of brothers within those 8 boys.

I don't think it has ever bothered either of them. DS1 (who is almost 9) has friends in other years as well as the ones in his year. DS2 (who is 7) plays with girls as well as boys.

DD (who is 5) is in a year where there are 11 girls and 5 boys. I'm not sure why there are so few boys in our village, it must be something in the water!

N01 Tue 28-Jun-11 14:24:23

thanks that's reassuring. but how bizarre about the ratio of girls:boys in your village!

ds's school is new and will only have 2 yrs to start with, will increase size year on year so the pool of people to play with is quite small to start off with.

Fennel Tue 28-Jun-11 14:26:17

my dc get this in a little village primary. dd1 is in a class with about 10 boys and 5 girls, was 4 last year. dd2 is in a class with about 12 girls and now just 1 boy. But they have mixed age classes so that evens it up a bit.

The result for my dds has been that they both have close friends who are boys, which they didn't have in their previous, larger school, but it's more of a norm in this little school. So it can be a positive (or it seems so to me anyway, but I like them having boys as friends, especially perhaps cos we have 3 dds).

BooyHoo Tue 28-Jun-11 14:27:16

actually 12:18 doesn't sound bad to me. 12 boys is still plenty of boys to play with. but what i think you should be wondering why you are assuming he can't be friends with girls just as equally as boys. my son has as many girl friends as boys friends and i would never differentiate between them or try and steer him towards male friends. he chooses his own friends and there is no reason why choosing girls would be any less beneficial to him than choosing boys. your son will make friends with the people he likes spending time with, be that male or female, as long as there isn't silly parently predjudices going on that makes him think he should be playing with boys.

LawrieMarlow Tue 28-Jun-11 14:27:18

Both DS and DD have more boys than girls in their classes. DS currently has ratio of 11:6 and DD has 16:10. I could imagine that girls in DS's class could have a bit of a possible issue, although both year 2 classes will be together in year 3 and so although the ratio will be about the same there will be more girls.

DD hasn't had a problem; not even when she started in reception last September and the ratio was 8:3.

Quite a few years have more boys than girls here - not sure why it happens - maybe we have all the boys from Jemima's village grin

JemimaMop Tue 28-Jun-11 14:30:04

Actually I find DS1 and DS2's years easier when it comes to birthday parties as I can just say "Oh, invite all the boys in your year". Which amounts to a whole 3 guests, a lovely number to have to the house or to the cinema etc. Then DD suggests we invite all the girls in her class and I faint at the idea of 11 5 year old girls charging around the house! grin

pinwick71 Tue 28-Jun-11 14:38:08

Agree with JemimaMop re the parties - DS' class has 15 boys but only 6 girls. Difficult to invite all the boys to a party but the mums of the girls tell me that they can take them all out somewhere eg event, theme park, as there are so few of them!

One or two of the girls' mums have occasionally said that they wish the class had a bit better gender balance but overall, I can't recall there ever having been any particular issues.

I think it is just how individual years go .. the older junior classes at school both have quite a few more girls than boys in them for example, but DD's class (starting in reception in September) is something like 12 girls/15 boys so much more equal.

crazygracieuk Tue 28-Jun-11 14:41:32

My dd is in a class 22 boys to 8 girls. The girls are extremely close to each other as a result and some of her teachers admit having to teach differently to compensate for the heavy boy bias but she doesn't mind.

My ds1 is in a class 12 boys and 18 girls and isn't bothered either. There are enough boys to make friends and (unlike dd's class) many of the girls are quite tomboyish so play with both boys and girls.

mustdash Tue 28-Jun-11 14:47:23

DD2 has always had a massive majority of boys in her year. At her last school it was 70% boys, and even when we moved it stayed the same. The year above her though was completely the other way round.

She's fine with it. Even at her last school where there were a lot of "fizzy" boys, she just laughed at them, and got on with it. I think so long as there is enough for the minority to make a gang, or at least have a small choice of friendships, it seems to work out just fine.

In fact, in DD2's case, it seems to be great. She has a much more relaxed approach to boys than her sisters, who think they are some sort of alien life force. smile

LtEveDallas Tue 28-Jun-11 14:49:59

DD (6) is in a class with 4 girls and 14 boys and it has been a bit of a PITA. In Sep there is going to be one less girl as her mother is moving her, citing the divide as one of the issues.

It was compounded by DD not knowing anyone when she started but 3 of the girls already knew each other (same estate) She has a 'best' friend now, but that took time and at the moment the teacher keeps telling her that she has to play with / sit next to someone else - but she doesnt want to as 'someone else' will have to be a boy.

Strangely, when we lived elsewhere her best friend was a boy, but here she says that they are "too naughty" or "too dangerous" (I know there are lots of superhero/fighting games that scare her). Hopefully she only has to do one more year at this school (despite it being a great school and the fact that she is doing well) and when we choose her next school one of the things I will be checking will be the boy/girl balance.

It has made a few things harder, and she really doesnt have very many friends sad. Luckily there are children where we live that she can play with, but none of them go to her school so she does get lonely.

GooseyLoosey Tue 28-Jun-11 14:52:54

dd is in a class with 8 girls and 16 boys. She does not really do boys. Tbh, it has not been a problem for her at all. I think the issues arise because there is a potentially much smaller pool for them to find friends in, but if your child finds one, they are fine. There are also issues for girls in predominatly "boy" classes as studies show that boys on average get about twice as much teacher time as girls, but this should be an advantage for your son!

MoreBeta Tue 28-Jun-11 14:53:27

N01 - both DS1 and DS2 have been at school all their days in a boy:girl ratio ranging between 4:20 and 5:10.

It has done them no harm except it is hard to form good boys sports teams.

N01 Tue 28-Jun-11 16:07:20

Thanks all for your views. In response to BooyHoo I am perfectly happy for ds to play with girls, and have no wish to segregate, however ds himself often finds it hard to join in with a gang of 2 or more girls who want to play eg princesses. Even the other day at our friends, he wanted to play their game which involved babies the girls wouldn't let him! I am sure it won't be a problem, just crossed my mind as I'm yet to meet someone with a boy going into reception.

BooyHoo Tue 28-Jun-11 16:12:12

even if the ratio was 6 girls to one boy, the teacher wouldn't allow him to be excluded from games at playtimes. it would be extremely obvious if this was happening and teh teacher should encourage them all to play together.

BikeRunSki Tue 28-Jun-11 16:18:34

In our village, in the year DS was born (2008) the HV says the ration was about 7:3 boys to girls. The girls are going to be hot property in 12 years time or so!

BooyHoo Tue 28-Jun-11 16:28:15


hatwoman Tue 28-Jun-11 16:31:04

dd was in a class where it was 24 boys and 6 girls. it was fine

spanieleyes Tue 28-Jun-11 17:47:19

I have 10 boys and 2 girls in my yr 6 group, last year it was 11 girls and 3 boys!

mrz Tue 28-Jun-11 19:05:33

I've had 20 boys and 10 girls (bliss) I've also had 22 girls 8 boys (sheer hell!)

skybluepearl Tue 28-Jun-11 19:37:41

I really wouldn't see it as an issue. My sons class has about 13 girls and 6 boys. They all rub along nicely.

UniS Tue 28-Jun-11 21:29:55

It happens in one form entry schools, not a lot you can do about it. Just luck of who got born locally in that year. DS is a fairly balanced class 10:13 but further up the school there is a 10:20 in one direction one year and the other direction the year above.

MM5 Wed 29-Jun-11 06:05:23

When I first began teaching I worked in a one form entry school. 30 year 1 children. There were 24 girls to 6 boys. The boys were fine and, actually, it was one of the best years I taught. The only thing I had to do was keep telling the girls to stop "mummying" the boys as they were very capable of taking care of themselves. Out of those 6 boys, one became a teacher, 2 became a solicitor, 2 own their own successful business and one joined the military. smile

sugartongue Wed 29-Jun-11 09:52:15

DS reception class was 22:8 boys:girls - just one word for you - CARNAGE!!!

veritythebrave Wed 29-Jun-11 09:59:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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