Boys' Problems in Schools a Growing Crisis

CONTACT: Michelle Galley (202) 884-8388

Boys' Problems in Schools a Growing Crisis, AED Report Finds

New York, N.Y. (April 21, 2005) — The problems boys face in school seem to grow each day. Research plainly shows that boys lag behind girls in reading and writing, they are more likely to be referred to a school psychologist, and they are more likely to be diagnosed with attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity.

“Clearly, boys’ needs are not being met,” said Barbara Sprung, co-director of the Educational Equity Center at the Academy for Educational Development. “Alarm bells should be going off. Statistically, boys are not doing well socially, emotionally, and academically.”

In light of the growing body of research on boys, and the increasing concerns of educators, parents, and child development experts, the Educational Equity Center at AED last November brought together some of the top experts in the field for a two-day meeting.

The result of that meeting is a report summarizing some of the latest, and most relevant, research being done on how boys are faring in the U.S. educational system. “Raising and Educating Healthy Boys: A Report on the Growing Crisis in Boys’ Education” states that boys:
Represent 70% of the students with learning disabilities, and 80% of those with social / emotional disturbances;
Represent 70% of school suspensions, particularly minority males in urban settings;
Commit 85% of school violence and comprise the majority of the victims of that violence.

Preschool and adolescence are the two ages in which boys face the greatest challenges. Those are also the ideal times to reach out to boys. “We have to start connecting with boys when they are still very young,” said Merle Froschl, co-director of the Educational Equity Center at AED. “If we focus on boys’ school experience early on, we will improve education for all children.”

The report, which also includes an extensive reference section of relevant research and contact information for leading gender experts, can be downloaded at:

Founded in 1961, AED is one of the world’s foremost human and social development organizations. AED operates 250 programs to help individuals and communities improve their education, health and economic opportunities in more than 80 countries and all 50 U.S. states.

Educational Equity Center at AED
100 Fifth Avenue, 8th Floor, New York 10011
Tel. 212-243-1110 Fax 212-627-0407