Sex education and the classroom

At least one study found that the higher the percentage of girls in a co-ed classroom, the better the academic performance for all students both male and female. If the single-sex education movement continues, you may find yourself in a position to vote for or against it in your own community.

A driving force in the single-sex education movement is recent research showing natural differences in how males and females learn. More than one-third of Americans feel parents should have the option of sending their child to a single-sex school.

InEducation Secretary Margaret Spellings eased federal regulations, allowing schools to offer single-sex classrooms and schools, as long as such options are completely voluntary. Bridging that academic chasm, they argue, deserves more attention than does the gender divide.

Making the case for single-sex education Those who advocate for single-sex education in public schools argue that: Few educators are formally trained to use gender-specific teaching techniques. Schlosser theorizes that a higher percentage of girls lowers the amount of classroom disruption and fosters a better relationship between all students and the teacher.

For a sensitive boy or an assertive girl, the teaching style promoted by advocates of single-sex education could be ineffective at best or detrimental at worst. To answer that question, Knowledge Networks conducted a nationwide survey in early Some research and reports from educators suggest that single-sex education can broaden the educational prospects for both girls and boys.

As the debate heats up, it helps to understand all sides of the issue.

Read the arguments for and against. Advocates claim co-ed schools tend to reinforce gender stereotypes, while single-sex schools can break down gender stereotypes.

What is fueling this movement? The National Association for Single-Sex Public Education estimates that approximately public schools now offer some form of single-sex education.

Political, civil rights, socioeconomic and legal concerns also come into play. Other influences stem from the way parents and society nurture the child: Professor Analia Schlosser, an economist from the Eitan Berglas School of Economics at Tel Aviv, found that elementary school, co-ed classrooms with a majority of female students showed increased academic performance for both boys and girls.

This move gives parents and school districts greater flexibility. Leonard Sax and others agree that merely placing boys in separate classrooms from girls accomplishes little.

Putting this research into practice, however, has triggered a debate that extends beyond pure academics. One mother, whose daughter has attended a girls-only school for three years, shared her experience on the GreatSchools parent community: Measuring public perception How does the general public view single-sex education?

Single-sex education: the pros and cons

And what are the risks and benefits of single-sex education? Some research indicates that girls learn better when classroom temperature is warm, while boys perform better in cooler classrooms.Many of the facts in this research reveal associations between education and variables like earnings.

These relationships may be caused in part (or in whole) by factors that are related to education but not necessarily caused by education. Single-sex education (teaching boys and girls in separate classrooms or schools) is an old approach that’s gaining new momentum. While single-sex education has long existed in many private schools, it’s a relatively new option for public schools.

Sex education and the classroom
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