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Differences in Gender
· Girls never used to go to school so boys would constantly do better
however, since there was the free compulsory education for age
10 and over in 1880, equality between girls and boys had been
introduced and girls seemed to excel more than boys.
· Girls' were expected to make marriage and motherhood their main
concern therefore they would learn about sewing, cooking etc.
However when the national curriculum came into action girls' had
to learn subjects they had never done before and managed to keep
up and excel.
· Boys are active + Girls are passive + School is passive = ?
· In 2004 Booth, John and Bruce said that "male students do not do
as well as girls in reading and writing and appear more often in
special education classes, dropout rates and are less likely to go to
· McDowell's 2001 study that young men felt weakened in school
environment and felt driven to leave.
· http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uwK6MHK0AT8…read more

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Differences in Social Class
· Cultural Deprivation- Working class children may suffer as a result
of cultural deprivation.
· Home Environment- Working class children cannot afford to buy
extras for school.
· Whether or not you have breakfast also affects capability in school.
· Middle class children are socialised differently ­ Deferred
· Working class children may find it hard to succeed because of the
way they speak.
· Sociologists Housey, Heath and Ridge showed that a higher
percentage of working-class children than middle-class children left
school at the first possible opportunity.
· Material deprivation also causes children to not work well in
school.…read more

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Differences in Ethnicity
· Certain ethnic groups seem to be underachieving because they are
not enough teachers from ethnic backgrounds to act as positive
role models.
· 94% of teachers describe themselves as white, 2.6% Asian/Asian
British, 1.7% Black/Black British and 0.8% Mixed
· A study carried out by sociologist James Coleman suggests that
socially disadvantaged black children benefit more when they are in
a classroom with mixed ethnicities rather than an only black
classroom.…read more

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Sociological Explanations
What causes inequality?
· Families that cannot afford basic kit for school are causing inequality to their children.
· Living conditions + Poor housing = Adverse affect on performance at school (Douglas 1967)
· There is more absenteeism for children in the working class because they have a lack of pre-
school education and a poor diet.
· Teachers words can cause discouragement and sometimes harm.
· Rosenthal (1974) divided teachers behaviour into four groups, socio-emotional climate,
input, output and affective feedback. He claimed that teachers with some of these
behaviours can create a gap between higher and lower- achieving students. He also said that
teachers may develop closer relationships with those who are high achievers.
Peer groups
· A study published by Williams project claims that student with higher capabilities tend to
have a positive impact on their peer group and help academic achievement.
· 34% of African- American students claimed that their friends made fun of clever students.
· A large study carried out by CREDE (the Centre for Research in Education, Diversity and
Excellence) claims that peers have an affect in early adolescence more than when they get
older.…read more

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Changing Inequality in Education
Since 1997:
· Standards have been raised in education
· Nursery for all children 3-4 years
· Smaller class sizes
· National literacy and numeracy skills
· Looking at league tables-how well a child progresses in school and
not just from exams
· Placing failing schools in special measures
· Identifying beacon schools to pass on good practice to other
· Teachers have to undergo teacher training to avoid labelling…read more

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