Results of a longitudinal study recently released by the University of Michigan indicate that behavior of fathers has a significant impact on interest in math. Stereotypical attitudes (conscious or unconscious) lead to less supportive environments for girls, such as buying math and science toys - always more for boys than girls in the study. The impact of these attitudes is not surprising, but it is further hard evidence that helps explain the gap between academic performance and pursuit of science and math careers. Females and males perform about the same on tests of math and science ability, but men continue to outnumber women in almost every relevant field. As one of the report's authors notes, "It's as if women are saying, 'I can, but I don't want to.'"
Link to report
(Thanks to the Connect for Kids newsletter for the link.)