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To wonder if single sex schools are an outdated concept?

(27 Posts)
BakerBinky Sun 02-Oct-11 11:16:53

Segregation in schools on any other grounds would not be tolerated in our scoiety so why on the grounds of sex?

Just a thought really.

Kayano Sun 02-Oct-11 11:24:06

I went to an all girls school and it was good for building female friendships, however it made a lot of us awkward around boys and the other half totally attention seeking from boys.

Mind the boys school was next door and we all got called tarts on a daily basis on the bus.

I want mine to go to a mixed school but I will admit I had a good education at my school

giyadas Sun 02-Oct-11 11:24:31

religious school segregate people according to religious beliefs, private schools segregate on grounds of income, and some people like having the option of sending their children to single sex schools.
What's the problem?

Seeline Sun 02-Oct-11 11:24:54

No - because it has been proven that girls and boys learn differently and therefore benefit from being taught differently. I went to an all-girls secondary and loved it. I had an active social life outside of school and never had any problems mixing with boys. There should be more of them!

Pagwatch Sun 02-Oct-11 11:26:18

I want my dc to go to single sex school and they both love them. Ds1 went to a mixed school for a while then begged us to send him back to a boys school at senior school.

I don't really care if people don't like them. They suit us.

ImperialBlether Sun 02-Oct-11 11:27:34

Both my children went to single sex schools. I do think they learn differently. Girls in particular benefit much more from single sex education.

slavetofilofax Sun 02-Oct-11 11:28:11

Some will benefit more from single sex, others will benefit more from co ed. Individuals should have the choice.

usualsuspect Sun 02-Oct-11 11:31:05

I think they are outdated ,yes

I had no idea they still existed until I came on MN

BarbarianMum Sun 02-Oct-11 11:37:13

I think YABU. No-one has to send their child to a single-sex school - that, of course, would be wrong.

Personally, as a cripplingly shy teenager I really benefited from single sex schooling. Yes, it contributed to my awkwardness around boys (but frankly I was very awkward anyway) but academically it was a savior. I never would have dared compete with boys in the classroom in terms of voicing ideas etc and probably would never have got into science (where I have now made a career) but stuck with 'traditional female subjects' like English and languages.

I did attend co-ed schools from 5-13 -it worked fine til I was about 8/9. By university I was confident enough in my academic abilities to cope fine in a mixed environment but honestly in my teens it would have been a disaster.

BakerBinky Sun 02-Oct-11 11:39:33

Where we live there are only two co-ed schools in the city and four single=sex, you we don't really have the choice unless we move house angry

BakerBinky Sun 02-Oct-11 11:40:16

sorry so we don't

ByTheSea Sun 02-Oct-11 11:46:12

I had no experience of single-sex schools, but now DD1-12 is in one and she is just getting the most fantastic education there. I am hoping DD2 goes there as well. They have brothers and also see plenty of boys outside of school, so no problem there.

Homelybird Sun 02-Oct-11 11:47:36

I heard someone on LBC once saying that the best option is mixed schools but single sex classes. To accomadate different learning styles and the social aspects. Don't really know if it's relevant to this post but thought I'd put my two pennies worth in! It sounded like a good option when I heard it. Not sure in reality it would work out or ever happen, but a good ideal, maybe?

BakerBinky Sun 02-Oct-11 11:56:08

Homelybird - I think that sounds like a good idea

MothershipG Sun 02-Oct-11 12:18:47

I'm sure I read somewhere that girls generally do better in single sex and boys in mixed. My DS has just started Y7 in a mixed high school and I am debating whether DD should go there or to an all girls school.

The Head Mistress at the girls school says that boys tend to demand more of the teachers attention and later too much of the girls attention. smile

IloveJudgeJudy Sun 02-Oct-11 12:35:01

They did experiment with single-sex classes for some subjects in my DC's school for a while. I'm not sure if they're doing it now. It was not for the top sets, but the next two. It worked extremely well for my DS, but the teachers do have to have very strong characters to deal with a class of 14 yo boys if they're not used to doing it all the time as I think it's completely different from teaching a mixed group.

ScarletLady01 Sun 02-Oct-11 14:45:16

I went to a girl's grammar school (I'm now 28) and I honestly enjoyed it. It was a great school, I got good results, I didn't miss out on anything and had plenty of male friends outside of school. All it meant to me was that school was for learning and having a laugh with my girlfriends and boys were extra curricular.

I don't think I missed out at all and I'd encourage my daughter to go to a girl's school if she wanted to.

cat64 Sun 02-Oct-11 14:56:29

Message withdrawn

bibbitybobbityhat Sun 02-Oct-11 14:57:31

Sorry - are you being unreasonable about what?

Thumbwitch Sun 02-Oct-11 15:03:26

YANBU to wonder if they are an outdated concept - you can wonder what you like.

I personally was very pleased to have gone to an all-girls' school and was quite happy that the boys' school next door allowed us to do mixed classes at 6th form level, to encourage social interaction. We also had shared transport with said boys' school, so it wasn't like we were never in the presence of <gasps> boys. But overall I found the atmosphere of a girls-only school more conducive to my wellbeing.

troisgarcons Sun 02-Oct-11 15:13:05

Habserdasher Askes - which has been around for 100 years and is now springing up academies all over is co-ed with single sex classes. Best of both worlds.

The majority of parents if asked would probably vote this way
1. grammar
2. faith
3. single sex
4. co-ed

Which coincidently is just how the best performing school rate in our borough.

HecateGoddessOfTheNight Sun 02-Oct-11 15:16:52

aren't there some sort of statistics that show that children learn better in single sex environments?

I wonder why that is (if it's true)

Thumbwitch Sun 02-Oct-11 15:18:21

I think it's true for secondary level, not sure for primary (I went to a mixed primary for which I am also grateful) - isn't it something to do with hormones interfering with concentration or is that just too simplistic?

hocuspontas Sun 02-Oct-11 15:19:48

They are only separated for 5 years! And regards segregation - all children are 'set' at some point so 'segregated' by ability even in co-ed schools.

The only time single-sex schools are wrong is when there is a boys' school and not a girls' or vice-versa. It should be a preference for everyone or no one.

troisgarcons Sun 02-Oct-11 15:22:45

I found this:

According to Alan Smithers, Professor of Education at Buckingham University, there was no evidence that single-sex schools were consistently superior. However, a 2009 analysis of Key Stage 2 and GCSE scores of more than 700,000 girls has revealed that those in all-female comprehensives make better progress than those who attend mixed secondaries.The largest improvements came among those who did badly at primary school, although pupils of all abilities are more likely to succeed if they go to single-sex state schools, the study indicates.[1] A Government-backed review in 2007 recommended that the sexes should be taught differently to maximise results, amid fears that girls tend to be pushed aside in mixed-sex classrooms. A major longitudinal study of over 17,000 individuals examined whether single-sex schooling made a difference for a wide range of outcomes, including academic attainment, earnings, marriage, childbearing and divorce [2].* The authors found that girls fared better in examinations at age 16 at single-sex schools, while boys achieved similar results whether at single-sex or co-educational schools.*[3] Girls rated their abilities in maths and sciences higher if they went to a girls’ school, and boys rated their abilities in English higher if they went to a boys’ school, i.e. gender stereotyping was weaker in the single-sex sector.[4] Later in life, women who had been to single-sex schools went on to earn higher wages than women who had been to co-educational schools.[5] However, men who had been to single-sex schools were more likely to end up divorced.

Draw your own conclusions grin

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