Ontario’s educational sector has experienced numerous changes in recent years, with increasing rates of participation in postsecondary education (PSE), declining secondary school drop-out rates, and strong performance by Ontario students on international academic assessments. Within these signs of progress, however, are indications that all students are not advancing equally (McMullen, 2004). The example that has attracted attention from the media as well as from educators and policy makers is the male population. Males have been referred to as the “new, disadvantaged minority” (Millar, 2008) and the “second sex” (Conlin, 2003). In the United States, a male high school student sued his school district, claiming that schools routinely discriminate against males (Jan, 2006). More recently, the Toronto District School Board, the largest in Canada, proposed the development of a single-gender school, boys-only classes and “boy-friendly” instruction (Wingrove & Reinhart, 2009). The concept of affirmative action on behalf of males has been raised and opposed at Canadian universities (Millar, 2008;
Coates & Keen, 2007). Is the male population becoming an under-represented group in postsecondary education, as some reports in the media seem to suggest?