Some good-ish arguments against my idea, which I don't find convincing
I found this idea, redshirting, quite dangerous. Studies have shown that delaying education, there is a significant drop in IQ. And plethora of other issues. while the diagnosis is more or less right, boys are not doing well in school. I think the language used is also problematic: "Boys develop more slowly", another way to tell the world that women are the "best" sex (they develop faster!). Boys don't develop more slowly, they develop differently. They have different needs, different strategy to acquire knowledge and maybe different interests.
I think the best solution is to separate boys and girls, from first grade to bachelor's degree. encourage having as many men as possible for boys and teenage boys' education.
What about a three month or six month offset instead of a full year? My son is high energy/young-for-his-age, and I am very thankful that his birthday came a week after the cut-off instead of a week before. But a second extra year would be too much. I don't want him turning seven a month into kindergarten.
I find this idea very intriguing, though I hope there would be some flexibility in policy to accommodate the outliers, such as my son. At age 3, he had preternaturally unusual self control, at age 4 he tested into a gifted and talented program, and has been running through school curricula two years ahead of grade (that's how his school is set up). Now at 16 years old, he's extremely mature, strategic, and risk averse. He would have missed out on a year of productive learning if he'd been held back.
My daughter was adopted and spent her earliest years in institutional care outside the U.S. She continues to struggle with impulse control, executive functioning, and is way behind her peers on emotional maturity. She would probably have benefited from an extra year before school.
To implement this policy, let's think about how to accommodate the outliers by gender. Either by making red-shirting optional, at parental discretion. Or, create a way for individual kids to test out of the rule.
That holds the boys back more!
A whole year of life?
I'd rather encourage boys to test out of highschool around middle school and start community college.
We need more men in the liberal arts fields to combat feminist sexism.
I know you mean well, but this seems like a condescending "solution".
Nothing personal against you. I like you.
I think you'll make a lot more progress and waste far less time if you stay away from the vile cesspool that is twitter. Nobody there argues in good faith, and using it only makes you dumber with time.
Interesting idea. I think it might not make sense as the first thing to try, as I don't think it addresses the demoralisation of boys and young men, in some ways it affirms it.
I’m never heard the term redshirt, but in Australia its pretty much the norm to start boys later than girls. It became a trend 20 years ago and has continued. Evidence suggests gains for boys in infants/primary but evens out by high school and then you’ve got adult males in high school; the smart ones (like my son) resent the extra year, and those that don’t want to be there cause trouble for everyone. Boys are concentrated at the top and bottom ends, there is a wide range of ability and social skills, whereas girls tend to concentrate around the average. I also don’t see what difference it makes if they’re going to be in early learning/pre-school anyway. Presumably they’d have to repeat kindergarten which seems unfair.
This all makes sense to me, however I hope you put a disclaimer in your book (I hope I can find it one day over here in Portugal), about how we usually are speaking in generalisations, because there are always exceptions. My husband learned to read with the help of a tutor by age four and had read all of Dumasby age nine. So he entered first grade at age six and was hated and taunted and picked on by the bigger kids, who even followed him home from school pelting rocks at him. He was the most kind andpatient man I ever knew. The only people who didn't like him were pretentious snobs.
To me, the world is not two dimensional, but more like one of those wooden round puzzles, which pieces are all different and interlock together, but that's hard to show on two dimensional graphs on two dimensional paper.
See: Why Men Don't Listen and Women Can't Read Roadmaps, by two doctors Pease, circa 2001, published in England.
Thank you for writing this post. It validates many suspicions I've had for years!
I wonder what data there is on amount of study and homework time of boys and girls. I suspect boys devote less time on average. This falls into your prefrontal cortex theory to further explain why scores on math and science are closing.
This is my own subjective university experience, but I have found myself, increasingly over time, having to deliberate if its worth casting an opinion -- since many have been squashed by, "this is mansplaining" or "as a white male, you can't...", and so often I hear my male colleagues being readily pathologised for trivial behaviour. I find the idea of boys starting education later due to cerebral developmental differences very interesting, but at the same time, I can already hear a future female academic telling an enthusiastic chap that his opinion is invalid due to a lack of neurological development. That kind of comment would break me.
Do young boys need to be redshirted or do they (and young girls) need for their fathers to take a red shirt?
Taking a redshirt as a father doesn't mean playing for the Bucs for one more year, in case you're wondering.
It means taking one year per child as primarily responsible parent. This time period roughly matches the time when women are primarily responsible parents during late pregnancy, delivery, lactation.
I am wondering if these educational delays in boys have to do with fathers not modeling that doing the grunt work is important?
Also, emotional availability in fathers is important for children to have emotional literacy about themselves, which provides motivation to learn and grow as well as the self control to focus in class and on homework?
So, why not advocate the fathers taking a redshirt to be primarily responsible parent (one year for each child) and to work on their emotional availability and literacy?
Why delay the boys to indulge bad daddery?
Comment on trans boys. I bet there is not enough data.