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England 2007/2008 GCSE Results by Race/Ethnicity
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The Department of Children, Schools and Families in Great Britain has released its report for 2007/2008 breaking down nationwide educational attainment by pupil characteristics, including race. Actually, the report was released in November, but I was holding off on posting about it because I was under the erroneous impression that updated, race-specific data would be provided in mid-January.

DavidB has posted on previous reports for 2002, 2003/2004, 2005, and 2006/2007. Some readers might be interested in my summary of the 2007/2008 GCSE results for racial and ethnic groups in England, which I’ve posted here.

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Science 
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  1. The gender gaps in Britain are just ridiculous: for example 60% of white girls reach some level of good achievement versus 43% of white boys. And the gap between Chinese girls and boys is even bigger! 
    Does every boy in Britain want to be Ali G when he grows up?

  2. I can’t find a direct comparison on the U.S. NAEP data. While white boys lag white girls in the U.S., they definitely don’t score worse than black girls, the way they do in the UK. 
    Britain seems to be suffering from a culture of lunkheaded machismo.

  3. Not GB: rather “Attainment by Pupil Characteristics, in England ..”.

  4. In (partial) defence of boys, these particular test results depend largely on patient, obedient, steady learning over a period of years. These are not the strongest traits of teenage boys, in England or enywhere else. It is arguable that the education system from age 5 to 15, at least, is institutionally biased against boys, and especially working class boys.

  5. Thanks, Bio. Change made.  
    White boys in England do outscore black girls in math and science.

  6. There is a similar gender difference in Germany, as can be seen from statistics showing the gender distribution in different school types. In Germany, children get seperated into different types of school at around ten years according to their academic achievement or non-achievment so far. I just checked the data for the state of Hessen (usually representative of all of Germany).  
    With an overall gender distribution slightly skewed in favor of boys, Hessen has 213 854 children in the top-end schools (Gymnasia), of which 113 699 are girls. In the very low-end schools, “Förderschulen” (special needs) and “Hauptschule”, there are ca 20% fewer girls than expected. (Link see below) Looking only at the low end, one might assume what one sees is the effect of the supposed greater male variability in IQ, but that doesn’t fit the high-end data at all. And David ;), girls have a wild phase in puberty, too. Or used to have, in my day. 

  7. How big are the UK gender gaps on international tests of students?

  8. To see the top end of the educational gender distribution in Germany in greater detail (and find out whether girls maybe cluster in the low end of top-level schools), I checked Gymnasium finals (Abitur, similar to British A-levels) results by gender (hard to find as German educational statistics normally don’t include gender or ethnicity info). I did fid stats for the land of Thuringia. There, girls outperfom boys on average and mean results, and in both German and mathematics when those two subjects are singled out, although the difference is smaller in maths (but in one single maths subcategory, variance towards the upper end was slightly greater in boys than in girls). Ethnicity must be practically 100 % German because Thuringia is ex-GDR and has few immigrants. Note: Social gender equality was far greater in the GDR than in WEstern Germany (eg, more women working, a greater number of women studying technical subjects; cf the current chancellor, Angela Merkel, who is from the ex-GDR and a physicist.)I wouldn’t be surprised if the numbers looked different in old Western German lands because of girls conforming to social expectations. url:

  9. Steve, I checked TIMSS (International Test of Maths and Science) in Germany, and the results for population III (highest level) flatly contradict the Thuringia statistics I cited above: Girls score about 1/3 sigma lower than boys. (Find it hard to believe that says anything about fundamental maths abilities, though, as I did the TIMSS tests a while ago for fun and they were ridiculously easy.)Wonder if you can find British data.

  10. Steve: “In England, no gender differences were found for mathematics or science overall at either grade.” (says the 2007 report, apparently the third/highest level of the test was not done in Britain).

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