Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Girls Crowd the Campus as Boys Lose Taste for Uni

by Schools Improvement Net: http://schoolsimprovement.net/girls-crowd-the-campus-as-boys-lose-taste-for-uni/

The Sunday Times is reporting that for every four girls who applied to university in England this year, there were fewer than three boys, the biggest gap yet …

Experts said this weekend the extent of female dominance was “a very serious social problem”. The gap has widened  since last year and is even bigger in Wales and Scotland, where 40% more girls than boys apply.

“It’s a very serious social problem in this country,” said Mary Curnock Cook, head of the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, last night. “The gap between boys and girls going to university is even bigger than that between rich and poor youngsters.”

The government has spent millions of pounds trying to encourage young people from poorer homes to enrol in degree courses. Education experts say that, by contrast, little has been done to tackle the lack of motivation of boys to continue studying.

Bahram Bekhradnia, director of the Higher Education Policy Institute, said: “It seems that boys are not as motivated to work at school and the government needs to recognise that. It could be to do with what they regard as their role in society and what is expected of them.”

Some experts, however, say boys may be wise to shun university in favour of alternatives such as apprenticeships or starting their own businesses.

Brian Lightman, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said: “Some university degrees are not worth the money. You have to look at the employment opportunities.” 

This is quite a significant disparity: why do you think it is happening? Are boys not motivated or lacking in ambition? Has the culture of education become somehow too feminised for them? What else could be going on? Please enlighten us in the comments and via twitter…

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