Gender and achievement in Botswana’s basic education: Exploring boys’ underachievement

Judith Mungoo

African Educational Research Journal
Published: April 12 2017
Volume 5, Issue 2
Pages 99-108


This paper highlights boys’ underachievement in Botswana junior secondary schools. The paper argues that there is need to establish the root cause of boys’ underachievement and institute possible remedies, while safeguarding the gains made in girls’ education. Drawing from findings at school level, the discussion demonstrates a structured gender based performance which mirrors what happens in the final examinations. Findings showed that just as in the final examination, boys underperform in school internal examinations. The study concluded that there is need to mainstream the issues leading to boys’ underachievement and mitigate them. Implication for practice is that schools should create child friendly environment where boys (and girls) can learn effectively.

Keywords: Gender, underachievement, learning environment, motivation.

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