Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Teachers judge a child by their name

A survey has shown :

Teachers in the UK say they can identify which children are likely to be troublemakers by their names.A poll of 3000 teachers run by the parenting club, found the names Jack, Kyle, Courtney and Brooke were among those thought to denote a naughty child.

More than one-in-three of the teachers surveyed "expect" children with certain names to cause more trouble than others, The Sun newspaper reported.

The survey also asked teachers which names they thought indicated bright pupils.More traditional names topped that list, with monikers like Elizabeth, Charlotte, William and Alexander among the top ten.However the name Daniel got a mention on both lists, coming in at number four on the naughty boys list and number seven on the bright list.

Hmm, lets look at those lists in full and see if there is any clue as to why these teachers are forming judgements on a child's intelligence and behaviour before they have even met them :



1. Callum
2. Connor
3. Jack
4. Daniel
5. Brandon
6. Charlie
7. Kyle
8. Liam
9. Jake
10. Brooklyn


1. Chelsea
2. Courtney
3. Chardonnay
4. Aleisha
5. Casey
6. Crystal
7. Jessica
8. Brooke
9. Demi
10. Aisha



1. Alexander
2. Adam
3. Christopher
4. Benjamin
5. Edward
6. Matthew
7. Daniel
8. James
9. Harry
10. William


1. Elisabeth
2. Charlotte
3. Emma
4. Hannah
5. Rebecca
6. Abigail
7. Grace
8. Alice
9. Anna
10. Sophie

Just innocent assumptions ,looks more like prejudice to judge a child purely on their name . So what is it about them that creates these impressions in supposedly educated teachers ?Well this is not based on stats (but then I doubt the teachers were rigorous either in their rush to label a child), but some names in the "naughty" camp seem to be more popular for working class parents, in the Black or Irish in origin. Good solid middle class or 'royal' ones in the "nice" section.

Does this prejudice cloud how a teacher might view the same behaviour exhibited by different children? Little Alexander is a bright boy that asks questions, little Liam is rude and disrespectful?

Of course I could be reading much to much into this. Thoughts or experiences anyone ?