Results from PISA 2018 reveal a persistent gender gap in favour of 15-year-old girls in reading. On average, across 29 OECD countries with comparable data since 2000, this gap was 32 points in in 2000, 39 points in 2009 and 30 points in 2018. PISA scores have a standard deviation of around 100 points: this means that gender gaps in reading were large in 2000 and remain large in 2018. In some of the countries that are often considered to be champions of gender equality, boys’ underachievement in reading is especially pronounced: in Finland it was 51 points in 2000, 55 points in 2009 and 52 points in 2018. In Norway it was 43 points in 2000 and 47 points in both 2009 and 2018.
In recent years, levels of social segregation have increased in several European capital cities. Against this background, a recent study analyzed to what extent education systems in European countries are socially segregated, and whether social segregation between schools is related to social inequality in student achievement.