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Are We Medicating the True Selves of Boys? – Marilyn Wedge Ph.D.

“I have a great class this year,” said my friend, a long time third grade teacher in a suburban elementary school. “I have 19 girls and only eight boys!”

I wasn’t surprised to hear her candid statement. Girls are quieter, less fidgety, and certainly less mischievious than boys. They have fewer behavior issues in the classroom and are therefore easier to teach. In general, boys have more natural energy than girls. Sitting still for hours at a time in a classroom is more difficult for them. They figet, tilt their chairs back, and shift around in their seats. When they get bored, they get into trouble.

Boys are held back in school at twice the rate of girls. They get expelled from preschool five times more often than girls. And they are three times as likely to get labeled withADHD as girls—13 percent of boys are diagnosed with ADHD versus 5 percent of girls.

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