July 10, 2006

New York Times - Piles On

The New York Times, starting today, will be running a series titled THE NEW GENDER DIVIDE, which, "...will examine what has happened to men and women several decades after the women's movement began." It's a huge topic, but today's issue is yet another media outlet talking about what's going on, or not going on for boys.

Looking at college registration and graduation data, the author of this article feels it's clear that it's not so much that men are "... in a downward spiral," but that women are doing better. "Still, men now make up only 42 percent of the nation's college students. And with sex discrimination fading and their job opportunities widening, women are coming on much stronger, often leapfrogging the men to the academic finish."

As I've said before, stand by for a flood of research that's sure to follow, as the issues behind these statistics are mined. Jacqueline King, a researcher for the American Council on Education's Center for Policy Analysis, is quoted in the article as saying, "Over all, the differences between blacks and whites, rich and poor, dwarf the differences between men and women within any particular group." That may be so, but the differences are still troubling.

Personally, I love that the discussion is taking place at all. Whatever direction this particular issue takes, it's just one more symptom of what is not working in boy's lives. As I suspect we'll soon be hearing, there lots of other reasons for adult men to show up more consistently in the lives of the boys around them.

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