Monday, December 09, 2013

Sauce for the gander?

The following is taken from an article on the BBC website.

Almost half (49%) of state-funded mixed schools in England are "reinforcing gender stereotypes" in terms of the subjects students study at A-level. This is according to a report published on Monday by the Institute of Physics. It says these schools are failing to counter the idea that certain subjects are for girls and others are for boys.The institute is calling on schools to address the issue to avoid inadvertently limiting pupils' options.
The study looked at six A-level subjects - three that have a very female-biased student base and three that are studied by many more boys than girls.They assigned schools a score based on how well they were doing compared to the national average. The analysis involved looking at what proportion of girls and boys from each school went on to study physics, maths and economics, which are traditionally male-biased, and what proportion went of to study the female-biased subjects - English, biology and psychology.

 Key findings
  • Four out of five state-funded co-educational schools do no better than the national gender ratios for A-level subject choice. These average ratios are already very imbalanced
  • Single sex schools are significantly better at countering these gender imbalances
  • Schools with a sixth form have smaller gender imbalances
  • Independent co-educational schools perform better than state-funded schools, but there are far fewer of them
  • There are differences between regions and local authorities that experts say will require further research to explain.
What I like about this article is that it gives me an opportunity to air two of my most cherished prejudices: [1]single sex schools are better; [2]secondary schools wirh an inegral sixth form are better. You can tell I went to a boys' grammar school!

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