Chapter 8: The Wellesley Report

March 9, 2009 | NeW Staff

The American Association of University Women has declared that American adolescent girls do not believe in themselves. They initiated a study on the level of self-esteem among girls called “Shortchanging Girls, Shortchanging America.” The Wellesley College Center for Research on Women conducted a study as well, “How Schools Shortchange Girls.”

In her book, Who Stole Feminism?, Dr. Christina Hoff Sommers shares how she did a bit of reconnaissance work on the studies and the veracity of their conclusions.

In talking with my brother today about the professor-student interactions in university classes, I told him that in the majority of my English classes, female students spoke more and asked more questions. In comparison, he noted that in his Business classes, male students did most of the talking.

The previous studies conducted by AAUW and Wellesley highlight the trend that male students in their adolescent years speak up more in class that female students. Nonetheless, more women are attending college than men these days and are less likely to drop out.  Dr. Sommers brings up the point that in comparison to other countries, American students are being outperformed in almost all subject areas.

“The president of the Educational Testing Service, Gregory Anrig, has cited three factors that contribute to Asians’ and Europeans’ higher performance: rigorous content in the curriculum, high expectations from parents and teachers, and positive cultural attitudes toward learning. Absurdly, cynically, or foolishly, the AAUW and the Wellesley experts are focusing on the one area in which American students surpass students in other countries, and where they need the least amount of help – self-esteem!”

Who thinks we should stop wasting tax payer dollars on Gender Equity Acts and the gender experts hired to implement the legislation? All in favor of using taxes to promote true educational achievement – say “aye!”

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