Roderick, M. (2003). What’s happening to the boys?: Early high school experiences and school outcomes among african american male adolescents in chicago. Urban Education, 38(5), 538-607.
This article examines the transition to high school among African American males who were part of a longitudinal study in Chicago. It begins with a comparison of gender differences in school performance from 8th to 12th grade. It then presents an in-depth qualitative look at the experiences of the 15 males in the longitudinal study. In 8th grade, there were few gender differences in school performance or teachers’ ratings of students’ behavior and skills. African American males experienced much more dramatic declines than females in their grades between 8th and 9th grade and were viewed more negatively by their 9th grade teachers. Ultimately, only 40% of the males graduated compared to 80% of the females. By looking carefully at individual students’ experiences, this article seeks to gain insight into the school, peer, familial and developmental processes that shape the school performance of African American males over this critical period.
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