Research that was recently published in the American Sociological Association’s Sociology of Education journal revealed that black boys may find it easier to fit into a suburban school than black girls.
Megan M. Holland, a professor at the University of Buffalo, studied the social impact of desegregation on minority students at a predominately white high school in suburban Boston last year. She found that minority boys, because of their “athleticism” and “coolness”, fit in better with students than minority girls because they had more opportunities to interact with their white counterparts through extracurricular activities Minority boys seemed to participate in non-academic activities at a higher rate. Professor Holland concluded that structural factors in schools in addition to minority males’ racial narratives created increased social rewards for boys and added to the isolation that minority girls felt.
In another study conducted by Simone Ispa-Landa at Northwestern University, researchers discovered that minority parents are also much more protective of their daughters, which caused them to have limited social interaction with white students. They were less worried about boys staying out late or going over their friend’s houses.
Additionally, once minority women leave high school or college, they find themselves still having problems with social integration — even as their paychecks and pedigree increases.