--Original published at jennacampanellipsych
I chose to research single sex education because I recently saw a presentation on this topic in my education class and both my brother and sister went to single sex schools. First, the advantages. One of the most predominate advantages is an environmental that isn’t focused around impressing others, making it more relaxed and focused on learning. This is due to girls and boys not worrying or focusing on impressing each other or not wanting to participate incase they got embarrassed in front of each other. With singe sex, they can have more open and honest conversations in class. Another advantage is no gender stereotypes. This pretty much means that boys and girls will be free to do what they are interested without worrying about being judged by the other sex, so they will be free to do activities or subjects that have a stereotype of the other gender doing it. In a single sex school anyone can do anything they are interested in with no worries about being embarrassed. Single sex schools have also been seen to specifically have great benefits for girls. According to one of the sources I found, CRC Health, almost 90% of girls in co-ed high schools are affected by some form of sexual harassment. Girls could feel safer in a single sex school during the important time of change in their life. A study was also done of 270,000 students that found when boys and girls were attending single sex schools they performed significantly higher on standardized tests. Now onto the disadvantages. On of the biggest disadvantages is that it does not prepare kids for the real world. Being at a single sex school may cause poor social skills with the other sex because they have had not had opportunities to work together or collaborate. This may make life after school harder when they have to talk and interact with the other sex every day in an office or higher education. Going along with this, by not having both genders in one classroom, students will not have another perspective while talking about issues and questions. Getting to see the perspective of others can help while learning things in class and they will have more experiences if there were both genders in class discussions. Single sex schools can also create gender stereotypes according to Care’s website. This could be due to the only time students are seeing the other sex could be at formal events, when genders are dressing up to impress each other. So in their minds, this could lead to stereotypes and unrealistic expectations. This one is a bit of a reach to me, but I could see how it would happen. In conclusion, I think single sex education could work for some and not work for others- it all depends how you learn and what makes you feel most comfortable. Students learn best when they feel safe, so it depends on each person individually to make that decision for themselves. For me, I originally wanted to go to a single sex high school but changed my mind, and looking back I am happy I went to a co-ed school. I think for some single sex works very well but I liked having friendships with both genders and that interaction everyday.