Associate Professor, Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington
Mark Long will be presenting "Gender Sorting Across K-12 Schools in the United States" and "Gender Gaps in College Enrollment: The Role of Gender Sorting Across Public High Schools" written with his colleague, Dylan Conger. The first article documents evidence of non-random gender sorting across K-12 schools in the U.S. The sorting exists among coed schools and at all grade-levels, and it is highest in the secondary school grades. We observe some gender sorting across school sectors and types: for instance, males are slightly under-represented in private schools and charter schools, and substantially over-represented in irregular public schools, a large share of which educate students with special needs and juvenile justice involvement. Gender sorting within sectors and types is also quite prevalent and appears to be highest within the private schools (where single-sex schools are more common) and irregular public schools. We find that gender sorting is higher in counties that have higher shares of enrollment in private and non-regular public schools. This sorting occurs even though parents have similar stated references for school attributes for their sons and daughters. The second article uses Florida administrative data to evaluate the role that high schools play in the growing female advantage in college enrollment. Using decomposition techniques, we then find that across-school gender sorting explains 12 and 16 percent of females' higher rates of enrollment among Hispanic and black students, respectively.