Were you meaning that they were weird losers because of their attitudes?
I didn't get the impression that you thought they were losers because they were failing the class or getting poor test scores. I got the impression it was because of their attitudes. Laughing about math, like it was a joke and that the failing was nothing serious yet it was a hard class in which to be accepted...how could they be so flippant?
I think it is a sign of embarrassment. And I understand about being brought up to think education was not important. It is not like it was unimportant, but just, "do your school stuff. You'll end up like the rest of the family anyway." (That wasn't said, it seemed implied). I was sick a lot and missed a lot of school, but I learned so much at home.
This probably explains some of the reactions here.