I've been reading a blog called "Why Boys Fail" lately. It's just brilliant, and talks about many of the issues I write about in my column.
My husband is a pediatrician, and one of the things he absolutely hates is ADHD assessments. Often schools all and ask him to assess this child for educational problems or ADD.
One day I got thinking about this issue, and decided to run a query on our database. I searched for a diagnosis that had something to do with ADD, or learning disabilities, and then cross referenced it for the gender and month of birth of the child.
And lo and behold, those most likely to be sent for assessment for learning difficulties were boys born in the fall (in Canada your school year is determined by your birth year). Everybody wanted to medicate all these little boys who were born in November. Meanwhile, hardly any girls born in January or February were ever sent to him.
If ADD and learning disabilities were truly biological, then we would expect an even split across the year. But it's heavily weighted towards the fall, and it's heavily weighted towards boys.
It's schools that are the problem, not the boys.
Now I don't have any sons (except my little peanut in heaven!). But one day my daughters are going to have to find husbands, and it's in nobody's interests to have schools fail boys. Otherwise, what will these boys grow up to be?
Schools need to engage boys (or more parents need to start homeschooling!). But just because we can't control a class full of 25 rambunctious youngsters doesn't mean that we should start labelling the boys as all having something wrong just because a 6-year-old can't sit still.
What about you? Have you had issues with your sons in school? I'd really like to hear about it!
Labels: ADD, boys, homeschooling, public schools