Boys aren’t learning to read — and it’s a global problem, write William Brozo and Richard Whitmire in a New York Daily News op-ed.
According to a Center for Education Policy report that looked at 40 states, boys “lag well behind girls in literacy skills – while only tying them in math.” And it’s not just an issue in the U.S.
Earlier this month, results of 65-country comparison called the Program for International Student Assessment revealed that girls tie boys in math while soaring ahead of them by an astounding 39 points on reading skills. SportsCenter, last time we checked, has a limited audience in Albania, the country with the largest gender gap in reading.
And that’s not even the worst news. In 2000, the last time we had comparable international reading scores, boys were only 32 points behind. In only nine years, boys – around the world – have slipped another seven points further behind girls.
Boys are somewhat better than girls at reading text printed on computer screens, according to PISA.
But does screen-reading prowess balance out the inability (disinterest would be a better word) to read words printed on pulverized trees? Based on college enrollment and graduation rates, the answer has to be “no.” Truth is, college has become the new high school. Jobs ranging from bank tellers to policing to sophisticated machine shop work require post-high school studies that were not needed two decades ago.
The global economic race to produce the most educated workforce will be won by the nation that figures out how to teach boys to read, Brozo and Whitmire argue.