Volume 21, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1388-3186
  • E-ISSN: 2352-2437



Teacher-student interactions have received increasing attention as a predictor of student educational outcomes. With regards to the underachievement of boys, observational studies have shown that boys receive more negative attention from their teachers than girls. In this mixed-method study, the relationship between teacher-student classroom interactions, students’ perception of equity in the classroom, initial ability, and grade retention were analysed. Questionnaires and standardised ability tests for math and reading were administered to 6380 first-year secondary students. For a subsample of 129 students, fifteen-minute fragments of video-recorded lessons were coded. Information was gathered about students’ certification (grade retention). Logistic regression analyses provide evidence for the higher likelihood of students with a lower sense of equity to receive a certificate forcing them to repeat the current year. The odds to repeat a year were also significantly higher in students that are more off task. Gender was no significant predictor and, based on the regression results of multiple models, it is hypothesised that gender effects might be mediated through sense of equity. The interaction of gender and socio-economic background (SES) was a significant predictor. High SES girls are less likely than high SES boys to repeat a year. No gender difference exists in students from low SES. Finally, lower mathematical ability was a significant predictor of grade retention.


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