A new study says girls have closed the achievement gap in math, but boys are still lagging behind when it comes to reading.
In a new study conducted by the Center on Education Policy, researchers found that girls now have the same proficiency in math as boys at all grade levels -- including high school. Math had traditionally been a subject where the gender gap had been evident.
In reading, however, the gap is widening. The study found that girls outperformed boys at all grade levels -- and in many parts of the country, the gap was bigger than 10 percent.The test results have study authors concerned. "Something is going on in our schools that is holding boys back," says Jack Jennings, president and chief executive of the CEP. "Girls should continue [to be encouraged] to reach their full potential. We also should ask the question of why boys are lagging behind."
For the past two decades, educators have been pushing for girls to study and to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math. Even with that emphasis, fewer women than men are choosing those careers.
The trend of boys falling behind in literacy also could be a factor in their success later in life, Jennings noted. Other research has shown that boys are more likely to drop out of high school or choose not to go to college.