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Last Updated: Sunday, 28 March, 2004, 13:09 GMT 14:09 UK
Bid to narrow school gender gap
Classroom (generic)
One of the conclusions was boys respond well to good discipline
Pupils have given their views about how to narrow the gap in educational achievement between boys and girls.

Sunderland City Council's educational review committee decided to ask students for their views on tackling the issue.

They sent out questionnaires to schools to ask what the problems were and to suggest solutions.

Among the conclusions were that boys do well when there is good discipline and respond to constructive feedback.

The Government has asked local education authorities to look at how to raise boys' attainment as exam results show girls outperform boys in most subjects.

Innovative ideas

The committee enlisted the help of the youth parliament to draw up the questionnaire which received responses from almost 20% of the school population.

Other conclusions were that boys respond well to teachers who set clear limits and high expectations and maintain a sense of humour and do well where there is close monitoring and a sense of community.

The review also highlighted that a 'laddish' culture can create a major barrier to boys' achievement.

Education review committee chairman Councillor Paul Stewart said: "Many boys perform exceptionally well in schools whilst some girls are failing to reach their full potential.

"However, the attainment gap in some subjects is such that boys' underachievement remains a major concern.

"Our review of boys' attainment has considered good practice and innovative ideas which could be shared more extensively to the benefit of all pupils."

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