Study says teacher’s sex matters to the kids

Study says teacher’s sex matters to the kids

A new study busts the politically correct myths and say that children learn better from teachers of the same sex. In other words, there are differences between the sexes and it makes a difference in learning.

Dee found that having a female teacher instead of a male teacher raised the achievement of girls and lowered that of boys in science, social studies, and English.

Looked at the other way, when a man led the class, boys did better and girls did worse.

The study found switching up teachers could narrow achievement gaps between boys and girls, but one gender would gain at the expense of the other.

Dee also contends that gender influences attitudes. For example, with a female teacher, boys were likelier to be seen as disruptive. Girls were less likely to be considered inattentive or disorderly.

In a class taught by a man, girls were likelier to say the subject was not useful for their future. They were less likely to look forward to the class or to ask questions.

Of course, they’re quick to say that this doesn’t prove anything yet, that it is only fodder for further research and that it’s not a manifesto for single-sex education. Interestingly, the article notes that the proportion of men to women teachers is at its lowest in 40 years. About 80 percent of teachers are women. Now, if the ratio were reversed for any profession, can you imagine the outcry as headlines and pundits worried about the “growing gender gap?” Where’s the outrage? In fact, I bet there’s more outrage over the fact that this study says that boys learn better from male teachers than from the fact that men are disappearing from the teaching profession.

Another interesting question to ask: If male teachers are so important for male students, how much more important are fathers to their sons? Is a girl raised by two homosexuals or a boy being raised by lesbians in the best environment? Food for thought.

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  • What I find most intriguing is the way the story is presented. Dee is the sole spokesman for his research and he is presented as being decidedly ambivalent about drawing conclusions from it. The only other people quoted are Greenberger of the National Woman’s Law Center, a known radical feminist group and Weaver of the National Education Union whose vested interest in keeping the system as it is (apart from extra money and extra work conditions) is no different to our own Teacher’s Federation here in Australia. The reporter doesn’t even point to the idiocy of Greenberger making a blatant generalisation and then saying we musn’t generalise.

    As a teacher of 20 years standing with experience in both singel-sex and co-ed schools I would agree from observation that there are gender differences in both learning styles and teaching styles. The growing gender gap in boy’s and girl’s achievements at the matriculation examination is I believe directly attributable to the feminisation of teaching which encourages girls and discourages boys. My observation may not have research credentials but I am sure that not a few teachers would probably say the same.

    Oh BTW I cannot remember a single female teacher who inspired me but I can recall at least two male ones who did so I guess Greenberger’s generalisation isn’t so accurate.

  • I wonder what happens with a female teacher in an all male school and vice-versa. I suspect that a good teacher would learn very quickly how to be effective with students of the other sex in a single-sex environment.

    Every teacher knows that male students and female students should be handled differently. In one-on-one interactions this is not so difficult but it is no simple matter in a coed classroom to adapt the entire instructional strategy to be optimal for both sexes.